Gov. Ducey speaks about his 'Safe Arizona Schools' plan while teachers plan walk-outs

Posted: Updated:
(Source: 3TV/CBS 5) (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)

Amid protests and 'sick-outs' held by Arizona teachers regarding their pay that caused at least nine schools to be closed Wednesday, Gov. Doug Ducey unveiled his plan for another issue plaguing Arizona schools: safety. 

[READ MORE: 9 Glendale elementary schools closed amid teachers protest]

Ducey spoke about his new 'Safe Arizona Schools' plan intended to keep schools safe from active shooters. This new plan comes after Florida is still reeling from the February mass shooting that left 17 students dead at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland.

Ducey's plan will include more spending on school resource officers and behavioral health services in schools, as well as a new way to remove guns from unstable people including a centralized tip line and technology fixes to get state convictions and other red flags into the federal gun background check system faster.

[RELATED: Florida lawmakers pass school safety bill]

"I want to do everything possible," Ducey said while on Good Morning Arizona on 3TV.

Ducey's proposal wasn't enough for Democrats and students who have been protesting school shootings. The governor skirted the issues of background checks on private or gun show sales or banning bumpstock devices that allow rifles to fire like machine guns. These issues are though to help stop more mass shootings from happening.

[READ MORE: Students to AZ Gov. Ducey: School safety plan does not do enough]

When asked about background checks at gunshows, Ducey stepped around the question, only saying that federally licensed arms dealers will still be required to run a background check on a buyer. 

The governor went on to say that Arizona's current system for background checks needs to become more thorough.

"In the state of Arizona, I learned that our background checks are only about 63.5 percent populated. The information that should be in there is not in there...once we fund this we'll lead the country in this," Ducey said. 

Ducey's plan will also feature a STOP order law which is an acronym for Severe Threat Order of Protection that will be able to stop potential mass shooters from having access to guns.

Ducey said he thinks his Safe Schools Arizona plan will be "the most thorough and thoughtful legislation in the nation."

Teacher Pay

The governor also commented on the widespread protests and sick-outs held by Arizona teachers Wednesday regarding their pay.

"I'm in agreement with these teachers. I want to see more money in the classroom and going to teachers' paychecks," Ducey said.

Earlier this month, hundreds of people wearing red gathered outside a Phoenix radio station to protest low teacher pay. Gov. Doug Ducey was at the radio station at the time. The demonstration was part of the growing #REDforEd campaign.

[READ MORE: Hundreds protest low teacher pay at Phoenix radio station]

Ducey said he plans to move $400 million of new money to K-12 schools and that per student spending has increased.

"We've increased per pupil spending by 10 percent over the last three years," Ducey said.

Ducey also added that teacher pay increased by 4.3 percent last year.

Just last week, a Paradise Valley teacher made headlines when she posted on Facebook about her projected salary for the next year, calling it nearly unlivable.

[RELATED: Paradise Valley teacher says her pay is nearly unlivable]

These increases are still not enough to satisfy teachers who say they are barely getting by. Arizona currently ranks near the bottom nationwide when it comes to teacher salaries.

Click/tap here to download the free azfamily mobile app.

Copyright 2018 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.