School guardian shortage in Volusia County

Volusia County is looking for more men and women to keep your kids safe, saying that they don't have enough school guardians for the upcoming year.

It has been a quick turn around, trying to get armed school guardians trained and ready to go in Volusia County in just a few short months since the shooting at Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.

School begins on Monday and Volusia County Sheriff Mike Chitwood says they have 35 guardians in place so far, but they need 50 applicants --  44, plus a few extra in case some drop out  of the program.

"There is another class of 20 or 25 guardians that is gonna start around August 20," he said.  "They won't be ready for the first day of school clearly, because they are gonna start afterwards."

The sheriff says deputies and municipal police officers will fill-in those holes until staffing is complete, but he adds that it does not  mean there will be fewer deputies on the streets. 

"We need to fill seven elementary schools and we're gonna fill them with deputies or municipal police officers on a rotational basis, until these guardians are out and up," he adds. 

For now, this plan is being paid for by the Volusia County Public Schools.

"The school board will pay a detail rate to get those seven schools covered until the guardians are up and running," Chitwood says.

The sheriff says all public schools will meet the new state standards for school safety.

"On the 13th [of August], every single school in Volusia County will have somebody with a firearm on the premises."