LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — Clark County School District wants to nearly double its police force to address safety at its campuses, and the district estimates it would cost millions of dollars to do so.

Matthew Caldwell is the president of the Clark County School District Police Officers Association. In April, he sent a letter to lawmakers urging the district to get funds to add 138 police officers to serve elementary and middle schools.

“I know people hear that and they say we don’t want to criminalize adolescent behavior and I would tell you I agree. We don’t want to do that,” Caldwell, who also serves as a detective for CCSDPD, said.

Clark County School District Superintendent Dr. Jesus Jara went to the legislature in March stating he wants $21 million to create additional police jobs.

“Our teachers can’t teach, our students don’t feel safe,” Jara said on March 31 before a joint meeting of the Assembly Committee on Ways and Means and Senate Committee on Finance.

CCSDPD currently has a staff of 190 personnel.

There are 40 patrol officers, and there are two officers stationed at high schools in the valley. Six of the patrol officers have K9s with four being able to detect guns.

“If you look at the problems we have with guns on campus, the gun dogs are absolutely necessary, and they’re also a good deterrent,” Caldwell said.

In a press conference on Wednesday addressing school safety, CCSD Police Chief Mike Blackeye said officers recovered 30 guns on campus this school year. Five of the guns seized were from adults.

Blackeye urged parents and relatives to secure their guns.

“Make sure if you do have a firearm that you know where it’s at. That your child does not have access to it. Check their backpacks before they leave home,” Blackeye said.

Earlier in the week, a campus monitor was shot by a stray bullet at Von Tobel Middle School.

Caldwell said more police officers would allow CCSDPD to patrol areas near schools. The district plans to roll out metal detectors next school year as part of a pilot program.