Ferris ISD approves firearms for teachers
FERRIS – The Ferris ISD School Board unanimously approved the implementation of a Guardian Program for FISD, which will be in effect when students return to classes on Aug. 10.
According to Ferris ISD superintendent James Hartman, “The program authorizes the designation of specific school employees to carry a firearm on school premises for the defense of students/staff in the event of an armed intruder.”
The employees who will carry firearms must be licensed to carry a firearm through the Texas Department of Public Safety, complete a psychological fitness exam, and participate in formal training with the FISD Police Department to demonstrate readiness.
The Guardian Program is one part of an overall plan implemented by the Board to strengthen proactive security measures which include:
• Employing two additional licensed Police Officers;
• Employing up to three additional Police Service Officers (PSO);
• Installation of access control equipment and automated alarm sensors at exterior doors;
• Expansion of video surveillance equipment for all campuses (interior and exterior);
• Implementation of real-time video monitoring;
• Renovation of secure entry vestibules at multiple campuses;
• Enhanced exterior door patrols and hourly security checks by PD.
Participation in the safety program is voluntary and is not a requirement of any employee position.
The superintendent, as well as the board, also has the authority to revoke at any time a specific employee’s authorization to possess a firearm under this policy.
“The board is committed to providing a safe and secure educational setting for all students and staff, and views the implementation of this Guardian Program as an added measure of safety to supplement the existing, dedicated FISD Police Department,” Hartman concluded.