The school shootings in Newtown, Conn., on Friday have focused attention on school security in Tennessee, led to pledges to increase the police presence at some schools, and bolstered calls for more school resource officers across the state.
It has also revived an intense debate about gun control in the United States.
The shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown last week killed 20 children, six adults, the gunman, and his mother. On Tuesday, the National Rifle Association said it was prepared to “offer meaningful contributions to help make sure this never happens again” and would have a major news conference on Friday.
In Tennessee, a few legislators have proposed requiring school resource officers in all schools, training at least one staff member to use firearms, or allowing teachers to carry handguns into schools not patrolled by armed police officers. But it’s not yet clear how much support—or funding—those proposals will have.
In Oak Ridge, Board of Education Chair Keys Fillauer said education officials will continue to advocate for more school resource officers, or SROs. But local officials said adding SROs could depend upon funding.
In Anderson County, Mayor Terry Frank sent out information on Tuesday on the positive measures taken this week by the Anderson County Sheriff’s Department after last week’s shooting, including four walk-throughs at Dutch Valley Elementary School on Monday.