BATESVILLE, AR (KAIT) – A lot of schools in the region have upped their campus security this year.
But in Independence County, one school has gone above and beyond to make sure their students are safe.
The Batesville School District has added an extra layer of protection this year, with an active shooter response team.
These individuals are unidentified staff members who have gone through 110 hours of training to become sworn-in county deputies.
Megan Graddy, Communications Coordinator for Batesville Schools, said these deputies are allowed to carry on campus, and are trained to be the first response while waiting for law enforcement in a dangerous situation.
“These are not just our teachers,” said Graddy. “They are staff members who are committed to keeping our students and our staff and our faculty safe. And they’re supposed to help out until the good guys get here.”
Graddy said that the school board worked to have these deputies cleared and to make sure everything is legal through the state.
The school does have three SROs in place for their school security, and only plan to use the response team in emergency situations.
The school is also keeping all strategies and the identities of these deputies a secret to ensure the most safety for their district.
“Our student safety is our number one goal. And by utilizing our current staff members and making them into county deputies we're able to minimize, if not at all eliminate, any possibilities or threats.”
The district has posted signs on all three campuses to notify that they do have special deputies in place.