The Mohonasen Central School District will now employ two armed officers to help protect students and staff in the unlikely event that an emergency situation arises in school.
The Board of Education voted unanimously Monday night authorizing the district’s Director of Security, James McCrum, to carry a firearm as part of his job duties with the district.
McCrum now joins Mohonasen Student Resource Officer Mike Rumbaugh of the Rotterdam Police Department as armed security in the district. McCrum is stationed at Draper Middle School and Rumbaugh works at Mohonasen High School.
“For me, it’s about response time in any serious but unlikely situation,” said Mohonasen Superintendent Shannon Shine, referring to an active shooter at a school. “We need to be able to mount an appropriate response in a timely manner.”
McCrum joined the district staff in 2016 after serving for more than 20 years as a state police officer, where he finished his career as a senior investigator. He oversees a dozen other security monitors at Mohonsen, but the board is not considering authorizing the other monitors, some of whom may have previous law enforcement experience, to carry firearms at this time, Shine said.
Other local school districts are discussing similar measures in the wake of school shootings nationwide. Shine said he has confidence in the Rotterdam Police Department’s ability to respond in an emergency but that the few of minutes it may take them to arrive on campus in the event of an active shooter could make a big difference in the safety of students.