Arming teachers is not the answer to helping school violence


McKenna Long, News Journalist

Schools are meant to be places of safety, security, and learning for children. But, the mass shooting crisis happening in America turn schools into a war zone

After the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting in Parkland Florida on the 14th of February, 2018, firearms seem to be in every corner of the U.S. The parkland shooting proved that children fall victim to gun violence even while they are in school.

The National Rifle Association is pushing law enforcement to provide guns to the faculty members in schools to keep themselves and the children “safe.” Although the NRA claims that adding firearms to the school system will protect students, there is no evidence supporting their claim. According to the National Association of School Officers, several people all around the nation disagree with this policy including teachers, school resource officers, and law enforcement. If law enforcement wants to make schools a place where people feel safe, adding weapons is not the answer.

Arming teachers will bring more issues into schools then it will extract them. Some students may find where the staff is holding the guns and obtain them. A recent study from Giffords Law Center, showed that one third of children know where their guardian’s firearms are located, and 40 percent of those children have handled the weapons without the guardian’s knowledge. Those same children could, and eventually will, find the firearms in the school as well.

The American Federation of Teachers and the National Education Association, are the two largest organizations of education professionals. Both organizations have done tremendous studies on whether or not adding guns to school would be helpful, and based on their research it is safe to say that adding weapons to schools would be more damaging than anything. A speech from the American Federation of Teachers organization says,

“Guns have no place in our schools. Period. We must do everything we can to reduce the possibility of any gunfire in schools, and concentrate on ways to keep all guns off school property and ensure the safety of children and school employees. Lawmakers at every level of government should dismiss this dangerous idea and instead focus on measures that will create the safe and supportive learning environments our children deserve.”

The NRA claims that adding firearms to a school will “stop active shooters.” But does adding guns to a gunfight make things any better? A study done by the FBI showed that only 7 out of 250 mass shooting were stopped by other guns.

Large amounts of cost and security debt come into play. Supplying insurance for all the teachers that carry guns would be very difficult. Training teachers to handle guns would cost at the very minimum $100 per teacher, this varies from state to state. This would take a large abundance of time and that’s without the time and money it would take to purchase a firearm and do background checks. If a teacher does not pass the background check he/she will not be permitted to carry a firearm.

Student’s safety should always be the number one priority in schools. Adding weapons to a zone that’s supposed to be a place of learning will not end mass shootings. Students and faculty members need to feel safe and adding guns to classrooms will turn schools into war zones.