LAS VEGAS - NOVEMBER 14: Eric Brandon of Nevada tries out a semi-automatic pistol at The Gun Store November 14, 2008 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Store manager Cliff Wilson said he's seen a large spike in sales since Barack Obama was elected president on November 4, with customers citing fears about the president-elect's record on firearms. The election, combined with a slumping economy, has contributed to an overall increase of 25-30 percent in gun sales at the store, Wilson said. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

BY:  Ohio Capital Journal

The Ohio Controlling Board has approved a $78,028 purchase to buy two mobile modular shoot houses to help train school districts with armed staff.

The Ohio Department of Public Safety made the request to the Controlling Board, which was approved during Monday’s meeting.

The mobile modular shoot houses are from North Carolina-based Kontek Industries will “provide live fire and scenario-based training,” according to the Controlling Board agenda.

The modular homes can be moved anywhere and feature “realistic-based training, rapid deployment, reconfigurable rooms, hallways and doors, weatherproof design and can build exact replicas of buildings,” according to the agenda.

Ohio has 67 schools and school districts in 36 Ohio counties that have armed staff members. The law allowing local boards of education to decide whether to allow teachers and school staff went into effect in September 2022.

The Capital Journal talked to four school districts with armed staff last year and they all said police response time to rural schools factored into their decision to arm staff.

Ohio school staff were armed before the 2022 law went into effect, but an Ohio Supreme Court ruling in 2021 required school employees to undergo 700 hours of training to be armed at school. The 2022 law lowered the required training hours for armed personnel from 700 hours to at least 24. School boards have the authority to require more hours.

This created the Ohio School Safety Center within the Ohio Department of Public Safety and school districts who want their staff to be armed are required to send their training plans for approval once their school board has approved the request to arm their staff.

Follow OCJ Reporter Megan Henry on X.

Megan Henry

Megan Henry is a reporter for the Ohio Capital Journal and has spent the past five years reporting in Ohio on various topics including education, healthcare, business and crime. She previously worked at The Columbus Dispatch, part of the USA Today Network.

Ohio Capital Journal is part of States Newsroom, the nation’s largest state-focused nonprofit news organization.


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