Alabama County Makes History by Staffing All Schools with Resource Officers

Tennessee’s legislature and Governor Bill Lee are at odds since the Covenant Christian School shooting that left six dead, including 3 children. The Governor has called for a special session to be held on August 21, supposedly to address the violent act and its aftermath. However, many Democrats and Republicans in Tennessee’s governing body have been calling for legislation that will incorporate Red Flag Laws and more gun control.

Lee and most Republicans want to tackle mental health issues and promote proper gun storage and training.


It’s interesting that Audrey Hale hasn’t released her manifesto. It would be more helpful to know what she was thinking when she targeted the Covenant School and planned this shooting. This could help guide any legislation agenda. Governor Lee wants to strike a balance between Second Amendment rights and Left-wing demands for greater gun control. Splitting the baby will only result in a dead child and no real solution.

The presence of School Resource Officers can deter not only an active shooter from targeting a school but also the possibility that one of its students could become one. The National Association of School Resource Officers is an organization that certifies and trains these officers across the country. They say that resource officers have been trained to build close relationships with parents, teachers, and students. It gives valuable insight into campus safety, but it also gives students an adult they can confide in, a role model and mentor. To keep themselves and the school safe, students can be valuable intelligence assets.

Private schools, like The Covenant School, would have to rely upon private security for this role. In March, Governor Lee put a bill forward to address this problem.

Many have reflected on the need for security in schools and the role played by school resource officers.

Bill Lee, the Governor of Tennessee, is currently working on a bill that would allow private schools and local law enforcement to work together to hire SROs. Until now, private schools could hire off-duty police officers or private security groups for school resources in Tennessee.

Metro police reported that the private Presbyterian School had received active shooter training by 2022. Officers believe this helped save lives. The institution, however, did not have any SROs. News 2 asked Director of Operations Mac Hardy of the National Association of School Resource Officers if private schools hire SROs. He replied, “Not many.”

The former teacher and retired sergeant described the bodycam footage as “picture perfect”. It’s not the responsibility of a head teacher to run to that shooting. It’s a trained, armed police officer’s job to run to that shooting.

Nashville Metropolitan Police has refused to increase funding for their resource officers despite the tragedy in Nashville.

A Northern Alabama County that borders Tennessee has started its school year with a partnership between the sheriff department and sales tax revenues to cover the costs and salaries of the resource officers.

For the first time, each Colbert County School will be assigned a dedicated school resources officer (SRO), who will help to provide security. The county commissioners approved the hiring of six new school resource officers, some of whom have years of law enforcement experience.

Sheriff Eric Balentine stated, “We’re so proud to have SROs at all [county] schools.” It was a team effort. Chris Hand, Superintendent of Education, said that the goal of the Board of Education was to have SROs at every school.

[…] Hand stated that the ability to negotiate a partnership with the county commission and sheriff’s department has changed the way we can provide a high level of safety at each school. “I’m proud of that. He said that the relationship bridges the gap between the law enforcement system and the school system. Brad Counce, County Board of Education District Safety and Security officer, said that the eight officers had 260 years of combined experience in law enforcement. The majority of the officers are retired, with several retiring at the rank of lieutenant or captain.

This county has decided to use its own resources in order to provide resource officers with the necessary equipment for the purpose of protecting children’s lives. What about the private schools? When speaking with Rev. James McCaney Jr., pastor of Florence’s Victory Christian Fellowship in AL and administrator of the Christian Academy said that there are no restrictions for any adult to carry and use a gun on school grounds to protect students. “We carry openly and physically all day. “I carry in the pulpit.” Rev. McCaney stated. This was the position taken by the church and school after the Mother Emmanuel Massacre in Charleston in June 2015. A racist had infiltrated a predominantly Black church Bible Study and started shooting at the congregation. As Rev. McCaney believes that anyone with a gun and the ability to carry it is welcome to help protect children. Alabama recently implemented constitutional carry which eliminates the need for gun licenses for those who wish to carry firearms.

Tennessee could stop trying to manipulate the law and instead empower its citizens.