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Education secretary Betsy DeVos discusses arming teachers at site of Parkland school shooting

Posted at 4:35 AM, Mar 07, 2018

Wednesday was the first full day of class for students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School since the Feb. 14 shooting killed 17 people at the Broward County school. 

FULL COVERAGE: Parkland school shooting

Since returning to class on Feb. 28, the school had been on a modified schedule. Wednesday's classes ended at 2:40 p.m.

"The mood is like sad, emotional," Sebastian Benitez, a freshman at Stoneman Douglas said. "People are happy to see their friends but it’s still hard to think about all those lives that were lost.”

U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos was on campus meeting with students and teachers. The meeting might give her more insight as she continues her broader talks on how to prevent such a tragedy from happening again. 

DeVos has said she is open to allowing guns in schools but says the decision should be left to local communities.

President Trump is in favor of arming teachers, saying that too many of these shootings happen in gun free zones.

“A gun-free zone is, ‘Let’s go in and let’s attack, because bullets aren’t coming back at us,'” Trump said.

Students at Stoneman Douglas have been vocal for change since the shooting last month. Their rallies were heard loudly and they have put pressure on lawmakers to enact gun reform during their visits to Tallahassee and during school walkouts. 

During a news conference, DeVos gave credit to the students for finding their voice and for taking interest in seeing what adults are going to do in response to the massacre. 

"People across the country in states and communities have addressed some of the concerns, some of the issues that have arisen here," DeVos said. "But we need to help elevate those opportunities and make sure people know there are solutions that can be engaged immediately."

When pressed about the solutions she referenced, the secretary did not offer specifics. DeVos did however say she was looking forward to returning to the school in the future.