ODESSA, Fla. (WFLA) — Nearly two hours of public comment into Tuesday’s Pasco County School Board meeting, every parent that had signed up to speak about the controversial cell phone tower plan had their three minutes of time.

“If there’s any risk at all that the radiation emitted from these towers could cause even one child to be sick,” said one Pasco County resident. “That should be reason enough to vote no.”

The proposed construction plans would put a tower next to the track at Starkey K-8 School in Odessa, and the board voted 3-2 to approve it.

“The outcome was obviously very upsetting,” said Erin Stroupe. “But I also think the way in which they got to that vote was equally as disappointing.”

Stroupe is a Starkey Ranch resident with three daughters, including one that will attend the K-8 school in the fall. She and hundreds of other parents oppose the cell tower and have created a petition, GoFundMe, and Facebook group to fight it.

“There are some pretty serious health risks that could be associated with the radiation that’s emitted from the towers,” said Stroupe.

But supporters say cell phone service is weak in and around the school, so much so that student safety could be at risk.

“As a former teacher myself,” said Pasco County School Board member Megan Harding, “I could imagine not being able to communicate with the proper authorities, my peers, or admin during an emergency.”

During Tuesday’s board meeting, Superintendent Kurt Browning said he’s worried about a school shooter.

“I would be much more concerned about an active threat on one of our campuses,” Browning explained. “Than I would my child, my grandchild, getting cancer from a cell tower.”

That statement shocked many parents.

“If he fully believes that putting a cell phone tower on the school campus is the best option for the school security,” said Stroupe. “Then what else has gone wrong here?”

Now that the board has approved the tower, Harding said the Pasco Board of County Commissioners has to approve the plans as well. Opponents say they will now try to convince those commissioners to vote no on the tower.