Armed School Security

RRPS Schoool Board Approves Armed Security Proposal
Posted on 11/16/2018

Security officers at CHSOn November 12, 2018, the Rio Rancho Public Schools Board of Education approved a plan to arm select, specially-trained members of its security force.  The decision concludes a six-month process which included the development of strict guidelines for the selection, training, and conduct of armed security officers and safety procedures governing the possession and use of firearms on school campuses.  

The board’s decision allows the district to begin the selection and training process outlined in the district’s policies, processes, and procedures relating to armed security.  It will take a few months for the first group of officers to complete the required training and begin carrying firearms on campus. 

This position is voluntary and the procedure would permit only school security personnel who are retired law enforcement officers, retired correctional officers, or ex-military, to carry a firearm while on duty.  School security personnel who choose to carry a firearm while on duty would be required to pass medical and psychological screenings, pass a firearms competency test, and meet the same standards used by the New Mexico Law Enforcement Academy.

Parents and community members were informed through email communications and media coverage, and had the opportunity to learn about the proposal and to comment at an August public forum and at school board meetings over a period of several months.  The district also commissioned/conducted parent, staff, and community surveys.  Those surveys all indicated strong public support for armed security on campuses. 

Armed security officers are only one component of a larger, more comprehensive school safety picture, which also includes:

  • Restricting campus access
  • Ongoing installation of additional security features such as electronic door locks, improved fencing, security cameras, and surveillance
  • Support services and counseling for students in crisis, and
  • Most importantly: nurturing a culture in our schools where students and staff feel free to share information about anything they see or hear that may present a safety concern
We appreciate the cooperation of students, parents and the community in helping to keep everyone safe on Rio Rancho school campuses.