Arming teachers bad idea

Story by The Signal Staff

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Over the course of twenty years, America has seen over 200 school shootings resulting in the death of approximately 300 students and faculty and injuries of over 450. The shootings aren’t a brand new occurrence, so, why care about them?

The answer is simple. We as a country aren’t trying to keep our future safe and protected. According to Edward W. Hill professor of Urban affairs at Cleveland State University, not every school in the country can afford to put an officer in the school and the ones that do only get one officer per school or two if more than 1,500 students. On February 14th, 2018, Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, there was a major tragedy. 17 people died and 14 were injured by Nikolas Cruz, 19.

According to Huffpost, the amount of hours they’d need to be trained for this is 40-60 hours per teacher. The cost of this would be around $800 to $1,000 per teacher. They would also need a background check and relevant experience.  It consists of three levels of training, with Level One available now, and Levels Two and Three to follow. It consists of three long days of shooting including a 12-hour day on day 2. Trainees will be on their feet for most of three days, in the elements, firing nearly 1,000 rounds of ammunition. According to NRA Carry Guard, Level One consists of three days of instruction from the finest collection of trainers who believe in drilling the fundamentals. Their philosophy: the best do the basics better. Day Two of training will be a long one as they extend into the darkness to get experience shooting and managing the weapons in low light and nighttime situations. They drill the fundamentals on the range, then they apply those fundamentals to real-world scenarios.

“Our classroom session covers details about the CCW lifestyle you may never have considered. And almost certainly haven’t practiced,” states the NRA Carry Guard website. According to The Washington Post, the cost would be about $71.8 million for all of our Nations teachers.

In an active-shooter emergency we believe it is very unlikely a teacher, even with training, would hit their intended target. This is compared to the less than 20 percent of professional police officers who didn’t miss in training situations of an active shooter. What or who are the stray bullets hitting if they aren’t hitting the target? This idea to arm teachers is seemingly more dangerous than the contrary. We believe the death and injury rate from firearms after arming teachers is likely to increase if this plan is carried out.

There are better security systems available. Let’s use Southwestern High School in Shelbyville, Indiana as an example. According to USA Today, their security system was installed in 2015 with six different ways to protect students and teachers. In the event of an active shooter, a teacher can press his or her emergency fob, which sets off a school-wide alarm and notifies local law enforcement. Students then barricade themselves in a corner out of view of a potential shooter looking through the window of a locked, bullet-proof door. Another device in each classroom allows for a teacher to tell law enforcement their classroom is safe, signal they need medical aid, or ask for help if they’ve seen the suspect. With a live view of hallways, law enforcement can see the shooter’s movements and if necessary, launch what they call “hot zones.” Dispatchers can shoot smoke out of cannons to distract and limit the visibility of the suspect in hallways.

We believe that we need safer schools. We do not think that arming teachers is the best idea, but instead we believe getting better security is the answer.



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