Back to school: Central Florida schools increase safety measures

Seminole County leaders and deputies hold meeting about school safety

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. — School officials increased their safety measures as students in Central Florida headed back to school Monday.

Several schools participated in the Armed Guardian Program this year, and schools that already participate in the program will be stepping it up.

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The program began after the Parkland School shooting. Its goal is to provide safety for students.

An armed guardian's duties are similar to a school resource officer, but guardians will provide armed security in case of emergency.

The guardians are trained school employees who carry guns and are hired for safety duties.

In Orange County, deputies will have gun safes on campus and active shooter kits. Schools in the county will also have access to security cameras.

The district is also adding two more metal detection wands to middle and K-8 schools.

Superintendent Barbara Jenkins said, "I want our young people to understand, don't bring it on campus because any day, every day, all day, you can be checked, you could be wanded."

The education department said 36 counties in Florida will participate in the armed guardian program this school year.