Letter to the Editor: Educating Jefferson County on options to protect our students

By Colby Drechsel

I am confounded by the JEFFCO School Board’s blatant disregard for properly educating the district on meaningful options to protect our students.  I wrote to the Board in March requesting an invitation to speak on these matters privately and did not receive a reply.  Reluctantly but by default, I approached them publicly during the April and May public comment periods.  

They have not addressed my proposal:  please educate via email all JEFFCO employees and parents of children enrolled in JEFFCO schools the knowledge Colorado State Statute 18-12-214 and invite those voluntarily willing to lawfully carry a concealed firearm on school property to protect our children per Colorado law.  

The Board set the standard for my request as they promoted, in an email dated March 30th, two recent pieces of legislation claiming to protect our children.  These laws are nonsense and one of the Board Members, Paula Reed, had a recent Facebook exchange in early June with Mark Marcantonio proving my point, “We were forced to buy a gun because our neighbor, who owned a gun, threatened to shoot us. The DA said there was nothing their office could do.”  It’s not clear to me whom bought the gun, but good for you for recognizing that you have the right to responsibly defend yourself from lethal harm.  But please, please, get training and train often.  

Paula/Mark, I’ll buy the first-year membership to Bristlecone Shooting and $300 worth of training classes if you contact me.  In that same vein, I’ll pay for the first two staff members of a JEFFCO elementary school to take the FASTER Colorado program.  It seems obvious to me that if only 11 schools out of the 160 schools within Jeffco have full time armed security, a reasonable approach is to welcome armed teachers.

Why does the JEFFCO School District administration building always have an armed guard at their front door during business hours, 7 armed guards during the May public comment period, yet my children’s elementary school has none.  Why does JEFFCO have a private militia of 25 employees and 36 SRO’s on contract but elementary schools are a less priority as protection?  My ask is simple, in the spirit of education and enlightenment, why doesn’t the Board address the public and invite them to consider CSS 18-12-214?

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