Kentucky’s House Subcommittee on School Safety listened to more testimony Friday afternoon and for the second time since its creation.
House Speaker Greg Stumbo created the special subcommittee to address school safety following the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut. Since then, many communities have begun discussing ways to improve school safety.
Last week, the panel heard from educators, law enforcement officials and from a representative from the Kentucky Center for School Safety. This week the panel heard from more educators and more testimony on school resource officers (SROs), which are police trained to work in schools.
The subcommittee also heard from a retired general who supports arming teachers. Chairman Richard Henderson says the panel does not support arming teachers, but he says it’s important to listen to all options.
“There’s no agenda. There’s no one actually pushing that. So it was preference of the chairman to hear all ideas, even those that we are adamantly opposed to,” he said.
Henderson says the panel will meet next Wednesday to hear how schools could improve school infrastructure.
“We’ve determined we need to talk about school construction and facilities. So we’re going to bring some people in from the state that have infinite knowledge about buildings and constructions and the rules and regulations,” he said.
Henderson says he expects several bills pertaining to school safety to be filed once the General Assembly is back in session on Feb. 5. Henderson has already filed legislation that would make the school safety subcommittee permanent.