School Systems Allowing Permitted Teachers to Bring Guns to School

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School Systems Allowing Permitted Teachers to Bring Guns to School

Posted sign at a high school to warn parents and students about armed teachers.

Posted sign at a high school to warn parents and students about armed teachers.

edweek

Posted sign at a high school to warn parents and students about armed teachers.

edweek

edweek

Posted sign at a high school to warn parents and students about armed teachers.


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One of the biggest controversies surrounding the school system is whether teachers should be able to bring concealed weapons to school for classroom and student protection. This idea scratched the surface when the Sandy Hook shooting took place in Newtown, Connecticut, in 2012 where 20 students and faculty were killed.

Then the topic headlined again years later after the shocking shooting in Parkland, Florida in February 2018. The new law would  allow teachers to carry concealed weapons on campus and they would go through a training process in which they learn exactly how and when the appropriate time to use a gun in order to protect themselves and their students. Some states like Ohio have already started to train staff members on how to use guns since 2013 as a part of the Faster Saves Lives project.

Along with the training process, there has been some discussion about whether armed staff members would have to have a specific permit or certification to carry. For some teachers, that is a big selling point, considering they already don’t have the highest paying jobs.

“Even if we got a higher pay I wouldn’t think about getting certified to bring a weapon to school,” said Civics and Economics teacher Chris Borkowski. “I do not think more guns is the solution to school violence.”

I think there are ways to make schools safer without guns. A big concern would be whether the staff members able to bring concealed-carried weapons to school are stable enough or know the right time to use them.

A lot of teachers and students are worried that a carrier of these weapons might be having a “bad day” and possibly bring out the gun at an inappropriate time. I personally worry about this myself because I know teachers can get mad at students at times, and what if they let their anger get the best of them? Or what if the teacher accidentally set the gun off?

I have some suggestions that may be a better alternative than arming educators. Instead of having two or three resource officers, why not increase the amount of officers depending on the number of students in the school? More coverage per student, more safety.

Also, having unlocked doors leading directly into the main areas of the school (front office) and side doors (cafeteria, where students gather in groups) doesn’t help with controlling the environment for the students. I think that we need more locked-door security at school to ensure our safety against potential intruders. It should not be so easy to enter the building unannounced. With that being said, Reagan has already started to solve this by making visitors wear photo ID badges as another safety precaution.

Those in favor of arming the teachers may not agree.  Some students would feel safer knowing that there is a weapon in the same room as them in case of emergency. Many also trust their teachers enough to know the right time to use weapons, especially because they’ve gone through the appropriate training.

“Gun control has been a hot topic in America as of lately and I was raised growing up shooting guns and knowing simple gun safety,” said Sophomore Weston George. “If you look at statistics, the places with the strictest gun laws are attacked the most. Shooters will think twice before entering a school knowing there is more defense than just one resource officer.”

While there are differing opinions about whether or not to arm teachers, everyone does agree that the priority is finding an effective way to keep our schools safe.