The Texas school marshal program was created shortly after the 2012 shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, but Texas had less than 40 certified school marshals across more than 1,000 public school districts in 2018, says a news report.
Applications rose sharply after the Santa Fe school shooting and the number of school marshals is now close to 200. Marshals receive 80 hours of training, including practice in “live shooter” scenarios.
Under the marshal program, school personnel, whose identities are kept secret from all but a few local officials, are trained to act as armed peace officers in the absence of law enforcement. Currently, schools that participate in the program can only designate one marshal per 200 students or one marshal per building.
The legislation — House Bill 1387 -- would remove that limit.
Since the House already approved the legislation, the bill only needs a final stamp of approval in the Senate before it can head to Gov. Greg Abbott's desk.