Despite continued frustration by both supporters and opponents, the school safety bill allowing schools to arm teachers cleared the Senate Committee on Innovation, Industry and Technology on Tuesday.
SB 7030 contains a long list of school safety proposals that emerged from last year’s special safety commission, but only one is defining the bill, and that’s the proposal to allow full-time teachers to volunteer as guardians and keep guns in their classrooms if the county school board approves.
The issue brought the bill a party-line vote 5-3 vote at the committee, just as it had in the Senate Education Committee in February, even as Democrats declared there was a lot they want enacting within the bill but they could never vote to arm teachers.
The House version, PCB EDC 19-02, is seeing similar splits.
“I have hundreds and hundreds of emails and phone calls from parents and teachers and instructional resource folks that don’t want teachers to be armed. Who are we listening to?” demanded state Sen. Janet Cruz, a Tampa Democrat.
The Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Commission, that’s who, replied SB 7030’s sponsor, Republican state Rep. Manny Diaz of Miami. That panel’s final