Since the 2018 Parkland shooting, lawmakers have been considering giving teachers and other administrative staff at public schools guns. Almost two years since the shooting and the third time the Florida Legislature is discussing school safety, Senate Bill 7040 was unanimously passed.
Senate Bill 7040, according to the Miami Herald, is 39 pages of safety recommendations for public schools. These recommendations include that teachers and staff who choose to be armed on campus must be trained with the weapon under the supervision of the sheriff’s office.
The use of the Baker Act in public schools has also been changed. Now, school districts must report the ratio of mental health workers to the number of students. Not only has that been added, but now police officers in schools must have training in mental health crisis interventions so that they can ‘calm down’ a student with mental illness disturbances.
According to the Miami Herald, one former high school counselor said that counselors in public schools need to spend a majority of their time with students, not doing other work for the school like substitute teacher or lunch duty. Therefore, the counselors can pay more attention to students and note who may be severely depressed and/or suicidal.