Like most parents who have followed the coverage of the school shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Connecticut, my thoughts have drifted to the security at the schools my children attend. To that end, I interviewed recently-elected Superintendent of North Dakota Schools Kirsten Baesler about school security.
Baesler points out that in the 2011 legislative session, North Dakota passed a law requiring that all schools develop a lock down plan and practice it at least once a year. She said that her office isn’t seeking any additional legislation from the upcoming legislative session beginning next month, but she is looking to coordinate the school districts so that larger districts who have the benefit of a public safety director can help smaller districts develop policies. She said she may pursue some legislative appropriations toward that end.
Asked if she would support arming some employees in the schools, be it by allowing teachers or principles to carry or bringing in security guards, she said she would oppose it. She wants schools to remain “places of education, not armed stockades.”