Howell joins other NJ towns opting for armed officers in schools
HOWELL — At a two-hour council meeting Tuesday, this Monmouth County township said it had reached agreement with its board of education to station law enforcement officers in all public school district buildings this fall.
That means the county's two largest municipalities by area, Howell as well as Middletown, will have armed personnel in their schools when the 2022-23 academic year begins.
This wave of decisions continues to come in the aftermath of the mass shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas on May 24 that claimed the lives of 19 students and two teachers.
NJ.com reported that Howell will more than double its current number of Class III Special Law Enforcement Officers from eight to 17 as of September, ensuring enough to cover all 12 of the district's buildings.
The district and the township will split the cost of paying the added officers, according to officials in the NJ.com report.
Middle Township, in Cape May County, said last week it also planned to place armed guards in schools when classes resume following the summer, though they are not expected to be Class III officers.
Morris County's Washington Township has hired two new resource officers for its schools, according to NJ.com.