A growing number of schools throughout the country are permitting qualified employees and staff to remain armed when classes are in session as a matter of protection and security, but one school in Texas is literally advertising the fact that its staff carries firearms.
When students returned to classes in Medina, TX for the start of the 2016-17 school year, they were greeted by a new sign on the lawn in front of the campus.
“ATTENTION: Please be aware that the staff at Medina ISD may be armed and will use whatever force is necessary to protect our students.”
The Medina Independent School District, located about 70 miles from San Antonio in the Texas hill country, has just more than 300 students from pre-kindergarten through 12th grade on one campus. Last week, when the school posted photos its signs on the social media, the response was overwhelmingly positive – with only two negative comments from a total of nearly 4,000 comments.
Superintendent Penny White, whose son attends the school district, told San Antonio television station KSAT the signs were intended to make a potential perpetrator “think twice” about inflicting harm to Medina ISD students or faculty.
“I think that anybody who might have a thought about harming someone in mind might think twice about it,” she said.
White says student safety is the school district’s top priority. Medina ISD officials will add two more signs, one located at each of the other campus entrances.
The campus is located about a 25-minute drive from the nearest law-enforcement office, located in Bandera, Tex.
“You never know if there’s a transient or someone who has zeroed in on harming a child,” White said.
White and board member Dr. James Lindstrom said there was no specific event that prompted the posting of the signs. Lindstrom said it was “the general environment nationally.”