A school district in North Carolina is taking school security into its own hands, planning to place AR-15 rifles in emergency safes at schools throughout the county.
Madison County, North Carolina, hopes putting AR-15s in schools will increase safety and curb gun violence. After the Uvalde school shooting that killed 19 students and two teachers, schools are preparing for the worst.
Sheriff Buddy Harwood told the Asheville Citizen-Times, “Hopefully we’ll never have to, but I want my kids to be as prepared as possible.”
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In the event of an active-shooter situation, the sheriff’s office has stored AR-15r rifles in locked vaults at each of Madison County’s six schools. The safes also contained extra magazines, ammunition and breaching tools, Harwood said.
“If we have someone barricaded in the door, we don’t have to wait for the fire department,” Harwood added. “We’ll have the tools to breach that door if needed. I won’t have to run back to the car to get the AR, because that time is gone.”
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Schools with vaults are Brush Creek Elementary, Hot Springs Elementary, Mars Hill Elementary, Madison Middle, Madison High, and Madison Early College High.
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Superintendent Will Hoffman is also committed to the school’s safety measures. In the 2022-2023 school year, Madison County schools will have a designated student resource officer, social worker and counselor in each school, add a panic button system to each building and have a school district liaison.