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PALESTINE, TX (KLTV) -
At a meeting on Monday night, Westwood Independent School District board members approved a plan that would allow faculty and staff to carry firearms on campus.
WISD Board President Theresa Bambeck said the plan was approved late Monday in a 5-1 vote. One board member was absent. Bambeck was the lone dissenting vote.
Bambeck says starting Tuesday, superintendent Ed Lyman will begin visiting the district's four campuses, to explain to staff members the specifics of the "Guardian Plan." The plan allows volunteer teachers to be trained and licensed to carry guns on school campuses, if they have their own concealed handgun license.
Faculty and staff members can begin signing up as early as Tuesday to take part in the plan, and go through the required training.
In December of 2012, Westwood ISD was placed on lock down after an injured man ran onto the school's grounds. The lock down lasted for about an hour, and students were never in danger.
Westwood joins Union Grove ISD and Van ISD as the third East Texas district to enact a similar plan. The Anderson County district has a total enrollment of approximately 1400 students. There are no armed resource officers on the campus.
Bambeck said that the district wanted "rather be proactive than reactive." As for her dissenting vote, she said that she wasn't completely comfortable with the idea of guns on Westwood campuses, but that she will support the board's decision.
Depending on how quickly faculty and staff members sign up to take part in the plan, the district could have armed teachers before the end of the school year, according to Bambeck.