Arab City Schools hires armed police officers - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Arab City Schools hires armed police officers

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After what happened in Newtown, Connecticut last month, Mullins said that he'd rather be safe than sorry. After what happened in Newtown, Connecticut last month, Mullins said that he'd rather be safe than sorry.
ARAB, AL (WAFF) -

Arab City Schools have some new additions in the building to help keep their students safe: armed schools resource officers. The officers have been there since the students returned back to school after Christmas break. 

"We're trying to do everything we can as a district to make sure our children never are innocent victims," said Superintendent Dr. John Mullins. 

After what happened in Newtown, Connecticut last month, Mullins said that he'd rather be safe than sorry.

"So we went from having one school resource officer at four schools to now we have an armed officer at every school," he said.  "Officers who are active members of the police force in Arab are giving up their days off to work for us for $15 an hour."

Parents like Leslie Graves are in favor of the armed officers. 

"I can't imagine sending my 1st grader to school and not knowing that they would be safe," she said. 

Teachers said they feel safer knowing the police are present.   

"I felt very safe from the start," said Spanish teacher Jennifer Haynes.  "I mean any kind of extra security is awesome."

Mullins doesn't mind paying for the police presence.  He said the cost for the cops is high, but a child's safety is priceless.

"I was asked are we being reactive," said Mullins.  "Yes, in some ways. But at the same time, this will cost us about $66,000.  That's a lot of money, but no one can put a value on a child's life. "

In an effort to continue their safety measures, Mullins said the schools are practicing their lock down drills and the camera systems are being upgraded.

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