San Antonio schools are taking proactive measures to prepare teachers to protect students and themselves. After the May 18 shooting at Santa Fe High School that claimed the lives of 10 individuals and injured an additional 10 people, Johnny Castro has seen an increase at the range he works at.
Castro, the manager of A Place to Shoot, was interviewed by KSAT 12 on the trend of area schools that are seeking training for their employees to learn how best to respond when there is an active shooter.
A Place to Shoot offers a certified 20-hour training course on that. Those certified in the course will be able to carry their firearm with them during school hours. Passing the course requires, among other things, hitting a target area with 90 percent proficiency.
“I’m probably working with about seven to eight schools on a factual level,” Castro said. “It doesn’t change the scope of what the teacher is supposed to be initially doing, so the teacher is not tasked to become a law enforcement officer.”
The Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) offers a program that trains staff members to become certified school marshals. However, marshals must leave their firearms in a locked, secure location.
Gov. Greg Abbott recently announced a school safety plan that will allocate funds to schools that wish to train and arm teachers and staff. It is believed this new measure is one of the factors driving interest in school trainings. The 44-page plan includes topics on increasing law enforcement in schools, training school marshals, and a it calls for looking more deeply at helping at-risk students through improved mental health infrastructure in the educational environment.