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Guns in the Classroom

by Ronald A. Rowe | February 4th, 2015 | Elementary, Safety

students (400x400)There has been a lot of talk recently about allowing – or even encouraging – elementary school teachers to bring guns to the classroom.  As with any charged issues, there are two sides to the argument and both have their merits.  Here are a few of the salient points on either side of the argument.


Allowing teachers to carry guns to school would put a deterrent in the classrooms.  Rural schools that depend on protection from sheriff departments miles away would no longer suffer long wait times for assistance in times of emergency.  “They refer to the police as the first responders and we are the first responders. I am the first responder,” says Mark Zilinskas, a High School math teacher from Indiana, “and I believe that I can make a difference and other people like me can make a difference if we have the proper tools and training.”

In theory, the very existence of well armed and properly trained teachers would serve to deter would-be attackers from perpetrating their heinous crimes on the grounds of a school.  The thought is that even if there are only a few teachers who actively participate, the fact that any teacher could potentially be carrying a loaded weapon would be enough to make a the bad people think twice before bringing a weapon of their own to school.


Having teachers bring loaded weapons to school increases the chances of accidentally discharging a weapon in the classroom from zero to… something greater than zero.  Teachers are not necessarily equipped to properly handle a weapon and could conceivably do more harm than good.  False alarms, overreactions, accidents, stolen guns – there are so many things that could go wrong that having the guns in the classroom poses a greater risk to the students and faculty than the danger it is intended to prevent.

Politically, the battle lines are drawn.  Gun control advocates hate the idea.  Gun rights supporters are all for it.  Both sides are so entrenched in their advocacy that there can be no room for reasonable discourse on a particular issue is nearly impossible.  But we are not politicians; we are parents.  And we can discuss the issue with only the best interest of our children at the heart of the issue.

Leaving your political inclinations at the door, what do you think?  Should teachers carry guns to school?  Should schools have armed security guards?  Or are we better off without the additional danger right there in the room?  Is there a better solution to keeping our children safe in the classroom?

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