The Republican-backed bill reduces the hours of training required for armed school personnel from 700 to 24, according to the legislation.
“Those 700 hours of training are intended to broadly train law enforcement,” DeWine, a Republican, said during a news briefing Monday, adding, “The vast majority of that training is not really relevant to a school safety, directly.”
DeWine said examples of unnecessary training included patrolling in a police cruiser, stopping a vehicle, investigating a traffic accident and operating a radar.
Teachers unions and education groups have condemned the new law.
The legislation also been opposed by the Fraternal Order of Police of Ohio. In testimony to a state House committee last spring, Mike Weinman, the director of government affairs for the FOP, said teachers would not have sufficient training to use firearms.
The legislation does not require arming staff at schools but allows a choice, emphasized DeWine. “Now, if a district chooses to arm staff members, the bill mandates up to 24 hours … of school-specific training,” the governor said.
The training required includes four scenario-based hours as well as first aid, the history and pattern of school shootings, de-escalation techniques and crisis intervention.
The measure applies to school staff “not being employed as a special police officer or security officer” who are “authorized to go armed within a school safety zone,” the bill says.
DeWine said that individuals “authorized to carry guns in schools must have a criminal background check each year under the bill, and they’re required to take up to eight hours of re-qualification training.”
CNN’s Hannah Sarisohn contributed to this report.