The Oklahoma House passed The Special Reserve School Resource Officer Act by a 68-23 vote on Tuesday, Fox News reports. The measure would allow public school districts to choose if they want to allow armed teachers.
"Our children are grossly unprotected from an active violent threat," said Rep. Mark McCullough, R-Sapulpa, who introduced the bill in part as a response to the deadly school shooting in Newtown, Conn. "We don't need to be willfully ignorant of the fact that this could happen."
Teachers must have at least 120 hours of specialized training if they want to be armed in the schools. The Council on Law Enforcement Education and Training would be in charge of the classes.
A few Democrats disagreed, according to Fox, saying 120 hours is not nearly enough and teachers do not have time to take a three-week training course.
The Oklahoma State House also passed a separate bill for private schools, allowing them to set their own policies on arming teachers.
Both bills must be approved by the State Senate before heading to the governor.