Ark. panel: Schools can arm teachers, staff

Clarksville School Superintendent David Hopkins is interviewed after a meeting of the Arkansas Board of Private Investigators and Private Security Agencies in Little Rock, Ark., Wednesday, Aug. 14, 2013. The board voted to suspend the licenses issued to about a dozen school districts. The Clarksville School District used the licenses to train more than 20 teachers and staff to work as armed guards. (AP Photo/Danny Johnston)

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — A state board is allowing 13 Arkansas school districts to continue employing teachers, administrators and other staff as armed security guards, despite a warning from the state's top attorney that the licensing law they relied upon is intended for private security companies.

The Arkansas Board of Private Investigators and Security Agencies ruled Wednesday the schools can continue using the licenses for two more years. It won't accept any more applications.

It had initially revoked two of the licenses, but reversed course after voting to keep a third district's license intact.

The panel had suspended the licenses last month after Attorney General Dustin McDaniel issued an opinion saying the law wasn't for public schools.

State law prohibits guns on campus, but licensed security guards are an exception.


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