Republican Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine confirmed Monday that he signed a bill allowing teachers and school staff to carry guns in school with reduced training.
The bill, HB99, reduces the number of hours of training the staff members have to get to carry a firearm within the school. Under the new law, teachers and other staff must possess at least 24 hours of training, compared to the previous over 700 hours of training, according to local outlet NBC4.
The 24 hours includes 18 hours of general training, two hours of handgun training, two hours of “additional” general training and two hours of “additional” handgun training, according to the outlet.
#BREAKING: Gov. Mike DeWine, joined by Lt. Gov. Jon Husted Monday morning, confirmed he has signed a bill that allows teachers and education staff to carry guns with training slimmed down from peace officer requirements.
DETAILS: https://t.co/Dq6Fh9OwhZ pic.twitter.com/0676jRWreW
— NBC4 Columbus (@nbc4i) June 13, 2022
“Our goal is to continue to help our public and private schools get the tools they need to protect our children,” DeWine said, the outlet reported. “We have an obligation to do everything we can every single day to try and protect our kids.”
Teachers and other staff members in Ohio have been able to carry guns in schools for years with consent from the school board. In 2021, the state Supreme Court ruled that they had to undergo peace officer training, which amounted to over 700 hours, according to the New York Times.
School board members will still need to approve staff members carrying guns within schools, even under the new law, according to the New York Times.
Nine states currently allow school staff to carry guns, according to the outlet.
The governor previously said he was looking forward to “signing this important legislation.”
HB99 was introduced in February, months before the deadly Uvalde, Texas, school shooting. However, the governor pushed for the bill as one of his measures in response to the shooting, according to NBC4. (RELATED: ‘I Didn’t Issue Any Orders’: Uvalde School Police Chief Speaks Out For First Time)
The Ohio state Senate voted 23-9 in favor of the bill, and the state House approved it with a 56-34 vote, NBC4 reported.