TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Florida Sen. Rick Scott hosted a roundtable discussion Monday with local sheriffs and school leaders in support of the School Guardian Act, legislation Scott proposed in April that would provide block grant funding for schools across the country to add armed officers or guardians across the country.
“Every parent should be able to get up and say ‘if my child’s going to school today, I don’t have to wonder if they’re coming home or not,'” Scott said.
Scott says the plan would cost roughly $70 billion.
The legislation would provide block grants through the Department of Justice to enable every K-12 school in America to place a guardian of some kind on their campus. Scott says this federal legislation is modeled after Florida’s guardian program, which was implemented in 2018 after the massacre at Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School.
Currently, 46 Florida counties participate in the program which provides funding for the armed guardians.
“They are there, that last line of defense to protect those kids in the event the worst thing you can imagine might happen,” said Ryan Petty, a Florida School Board member who lost his daughter in the Parkland shooting in 2018.
“To be able to take what we’ve learned here in Florida, some of our successes, and make them go nationwide, it’s really a no brainer,” said Hernando County Sheriff Al Nienhuis.
Sen. Scott says he’s talking to Democrats in an effort to gain bipartisan support for the plan.