The Woodward News

Local News

March 27, 2013

House panel passes school intruder bill

Woodward, Okla. — OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Legislation requiring Oklahoma public schools to conduct drills to prepare students and teachers for possible intruders was approved by a state House committee Tuesday.

The measure, passed by the House Education Committee 16-0, is among recommendations submitted to lawmakers earlier this month by the Oklahoma Commission on School Security, a task force created after last year's deadly shooting at a Connecticut elementary school.

The commission's chairman, Lt. Gov. Todd Lamb, said the task force's recommendations have received overwhelming support in the Legislature.

"Thus far there has not been a single 'no' vote on any recommendation from the Oklahoma Commission on School Security," Lamb said. "The Legislature has demonstrated again that school security is a non-partisan issue."

House Speaker T.W. Shannon, the bill's House author, said like fire, tornado and other drills already conducted at Oklahoma schools, children and faculty members must be prepared for emergencies involving intruders.

"Unfortunately, we live in a world where our children being targets of a heinous act is a reality," Shannon said.

The bill now goes to the full House, where it is expected to pass. It has already been approved by the Senate.

The bill would require public schools to conduct at least two intruder drills each school year in an attempt to avoid casualties by an armed intruder. Each drill would be conducted in the first 15 days of each semester.

The 22-member School Security Commission was formed just days after the December shooting rampage that left 20 children and six adults dead at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. The commission has made five recommendations, including creating a statewide school security institute that would coordinate and standardize school security procedures statewide.

Oklahoma's program would operate under the state Office of Homeland Security and would cost about $500,000 to launch, according to officials. It would act as the lead agency in providing training and security procedures and could expand its work to include school security officers and architectural designs to make schools safer.

Other recommendations by the task force include mental health training for school staffs and requiring that unauthorized firearms discovered on a school's grounds be reported to law enforcement authorities. Bills based on the recommendations are scheduled to be heard by a House committee next week.

1
Text Only
Local News
  • Tulsa man looking for military friend

    There are times in everyone's life when you think back and wonder whatever happened to those old friends from your past.

    July 23, 2014

  • Zoning change approved by commission

    Monday night Woodward city commissioners unanimously approved a zoning change that was contested by one local man who was protesting because he wants the neighborhood to continue its residential growth.

    July 23, 2014

  • Tangier Reunion set for Saturday, Sunday

    When Barbara (Allison) Merwin thinks back to the years she spent in the classrooms of Tangier High School, it takes a few moments for her to recall how school life was 60 years ago.

    July 23, 2014

  • Traveler Majors take regional opener

    ALVA - The Traveler Majors continued their strong Connie Mack playoff showing at Northwestern Oklahoma State University Tuesday.

    July 22, 2014

  • County OKs road use agreement

    Woodward County Commissioners on Monday approved a final version of a road use agreement between a energy company planning a wind turbine construction project near southeast Woodward County.

    July 22, 2014

  • Camp to show art is everywhere

    The Woodward Arts Theatre will become a recycling plant next week.

    July 22, 2014

  • Fairview Wrangler Rodeo turns 50 this year

    Western fun continues in Northwest Oklahoma as the Fairview Wrangler’s hosting their 50th annual rodeo.

    July 22, 2014

  • Common Core repeal has educators worried

    OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — With the Legislature's repeal of tough, new English and math standards known as Common Core, education leaders said they're concerned Oklahoma students will fall further behind their counterparts in more than 40 state which have implemented the standards.

    July 22, 2014

  • web1.jpg Travelers win Connie Mack state championship

    Down 2-0 and down to their final three outs, the Traveler Majors delivered a championship rally in the seventh inning Sunday.

    July 20, 2014 9 Photos

  • Hearing set on rezoning

    City commissioners will tackle rezoning items and a licensing agreement amendment Monday evening at the regularly scheduled meeting of the City of Woodward and Woodward Municipal Authority.

    July 20, 2014