House Passes Bill to Allow Guns in Schools

By: Allison Nielsen | Posted: April 28, 2014 12:45 PM

A bill to allow guns in Florida schools made it through the Florida House on Monday, passing with a vote of 71-44.

Legislators voted mostly on party lines.

HB 753, sponsored by Rep. Greg Steube, R-Sarasota, would allow local school boards or school principals to designate employees -- typically former or current law enforcement officers -- to carry guns on campus.

HB 753 would require trained officials to complete 40 hours of school safety training as well as eight hours of active shooter training and four hours of firearm proficiency training. The training programs would be administered across the state by State of Florida Criminal Justice Training Centers.

According to the bill, the Criminal Justice Training Center must certify and provide proof of the designee's completion of the training “in a manner prescribed by the Criminal Justice Standards and Training Commission.”

On top of the safety training, all officials would also be required to have a concealed carry permit.

Not just anyone would be able to carry firearms in schools. The designees would have to be select military. Those who served as law enforcement officials would need to have retired in good standing and would need to complete a mental evaluation to ensure they're mentally sound for the job.

The bill has gathered considerable criticism from its opponents, one of whom is the Florida School Board Association. FSBA has said it supports school safety, but allowing guns in schools is shaky ground for the organization.

“FSBA believes that only highly trained professional law enforcement officers can be entrusted with weaponry on our school grounds,” said school board representative Ruth Melton.

Some state reps chimed in with their opposition to the bill, saying it might give school officials the wrong idea about just how safe they are.

Rep. Dwayne Taylor, D-Daytona Beach, said HB 753 might provide a "false sense of security" for schoolteachers.

The legislation will now head to the Senate, but its fate is uncertain as its companion bill has been held up since March.

Reach Tampa-based reporter Allison Nielsen at or follow her on Twitter at @AllisonNielsen. 


Comments (5)

12:09PM APR 29TH 2014
SANITY prevails ! AMEN !
Very Good Move
4:24PM APR 28TH 2014
Very Good! They have effectively removed the stigma of schools are gun free zones! Even the drugged up idiots will be able to "remember there might be guns in them thar classrooms!" Could be dangerous to the health of those who would reak havoc on our children at their schools.

Now! How about everybody join hands and lets get this Common Core run out of the State of Florida! And since Jeb Bush is the daddy of it why don't he go right along with it? Maybe Jeb Bush can take his Common Core to other states and make his home base out of his home state of Texas - after all he and his goons have installed his son George P. Bush as the Land commissioner - also the School Budget handler.

Florida got along just find before we had Jeb Bush ruining things with his friends from Miami, cuba, Spain and Venezuela pulling off these schemes.
3:54PM APR 28TH 2014
Another bill brought to you by the N.R.A. Why not make it a law that everyone has to carry a gun.
12:11PM APR 29TH 2014
You have demonstrated, by this and other of your posts, that you don't have a clue... Go to your room (and try reading a book) !
too late Joe
4:19PM APR 28TH 2014
Don't worry Joe that day is fast approaching that everyone will have to carry a gun if they want to survive and when it does their won't be time to call the lawmakers back into session, it will be too late.

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