Another school season has come and gone and North Dakota's luck has held again. So far we haven't had a school shooting in our state, but not by anything we've done.
Before you go jumping to conclusions, this isn't about taking anyone's guns, or arming teachers, or even mental illness. I just want us to be proactive instead of reactive.
I propose that all of our schools have their major entries fitted with bulletproof glass and metal detectors. If we can put these in our courthouses and even the Fargodome to protect football fans and concertgoers, why not our schools? Secondly, all classrooms should have bulletproof doors and a secure locking system. Lastly, every elementary, middle, and high school should have at least one resource officer. Although they will be part of the local metro police force or local sheriff's department, their salaries will not be a burden to the taxpayer.
How will all this be possible? It's called the Legacy Fund. From current released information the fund has over $4.2 billion in principal and $5.4 billion in total assets, projected to be over $6 billion by the next legislative session.
Even though 15 percent of the principal can be used, I'm glad they aren't planning on touching it. But I think we should protect our number one asset -- our children! I know the rules for dispersion will have to be changed. The funds for the schools should be grants, not low interest loans. All of these projects should be no cost to the local taxpayer.
I know there will be lots of naysayers saying it's too costly or it just can't be done, but they'll be the ones with blood on their hands when a school shooting happens here. Will these proposals stop all attempts? No, but they will give our kids and teachers time and access to a safe area. Come on North Dakota, we can do this. These kids are our future leaders let's show them how it's done.
Harold Ziegler, Oakes