COVINGTON - School shootings across the country have spawned heavy talk about changes to campus security.
State Representative John Schroder from Covington is interested in making some changes in Louisiana classrooms, but he wants to drum up conversation with teachers and parents before heading to the Capitol this spring.
“As time goes by and people forget what happened yesterday, I don't want to get into the legislative process and find out later on that there's something that we should have done," he said.
Schroder has already filed a bill that would allow off-duty law enforcement to carry weapons in gun-free zones, like schools. Another bill he’s working on with higher education leaders would allow universities to decide whether professors could be armed. Parents and teachers are glad they get to be a part of creating any more changes.
"It's really comforting and empowering to hear there's a politician that wants to hear from those most directly affected by tragedy, or potential tragedy," said teacher Sally McKellip.
"You're going to end up with a much better product," said parent Sharon Hewitt.
Schroder says responses so far have included more resource officers and revising door lock systems for classrooms and school buildings, but he wants more. Parents and teachers we talked to say they’re ready to speak up.
"Something positive and peaceful that really employs some critical and creative thinking," said McKellip.
"My advice to Representative Schroder would be to consider these ideas and find a way to fund them so we can really get those put into our schools quickly," said Hewitt.
Schroder has a special email account set up for any suggestions you want to give, in addition to contacting his legislative office at 985-893-6262. The email address, where you can remain anonymous if you’d like, is: firstname.lastname@example.org