CASTLE ROCK, Colo. (CBS4) – The Douglas County School District’s safety and security team has acquired 10 semi-automatic long rifles for its officers.

According to Douglas County Schools spokesperson Paula Hans, all district security officers are former law enforcement officers, which is a part of the job requirement. They train side-by-side with law enforcement and go through the same training as law enforcement. But unlike SROs (school resource officers), who are public law enforcement officers (LEOs) but partially funded by the district, they are school district employees.

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On of the Bushmaster semi-automatic long rifles (credit: Douglas County School District)

On of the Bushmaster semi-automatic long rifles (credit: Douglas County School District)

SROs are actual law enforcement and are stationed at high schools. School security officers are more mobile and patrol the entire district. Some coverage areas are larger than others and are patrolled during school hours and some other times.

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“We believe in a layered approach,” Hans said.

The Douglas County School District also has school marshals. They are also LEOs and rotate among elementary and middle schools with multiple visits per school per day.

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There are currently eight security officers for Douglas County Schools. They have previously been armed with handguns and will continue to carry them.