The St. Paul, Minn., school board approved a policy last week spelling out how Taser stun guns should be used in the 42,000-student district.
Officers with the city police department have been carrying the devices, which shoot darts of electricity that cause people to briefly lose neuromuscular control, for about four months in schools. Police officers have yet to use the devices in schools.
Under the policy, school resource officers are to use the devices only when students are in danger of causing physical harm to themselves or others. It was approved on May 17 by a vote of 4-1 and was devised in cooperation with the St. Paul police.
Steve Linders, a spokesman for the district, said board members wanted to spell out the policy after learning of instances in other districts where students had been stunned with the devices. (“Officers’ Stun Guns Raising Serious Concerns,” March 2, 2005.)