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SLED chief: An officer in every school is a must

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SLED Chief Mark Keel SLED Chief Mark Keel

By SEANNA ADCOX
Associated Press

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - South Carolina's top law enforcement officer says having a police officer in every school in the state is a must.

State Law Enforcement Division Chief Mark Keel told senators Thursday that's his top recommendation for ensuring school safety after last month's massacre at a Connecticut elementary school.

How to pay for the idea is up for debate.

Keel opposes arming school employees.

He says even those with concealed weapon permits have limited training. Keel also says it would create confusion, because officers responding to a shooting would not be able to identify the bad guys if employees in civilian clothes have guns.

But state schools chief Mick Zais says whether to allow a few highly trained employees to carry a gun should be a local decision.

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