Taking Sides:School Personnel Should Not Be Armed

Em Rigda, Columnist

  In the United States, there is a constant threat of being harmed in a public place due to gun usage. According to the New York Times, as of Feb. 20, 2023, there have been 80 mass shootings in the U.S. in 2023 alone. That is more shootings than days so far this year. Gun violence is a solely American issue that has been plaguing the nation for far too long. However, the solution to this problem is not increasing the number of people who have access to guns. 

  Instruction of firearms for professionals, such as police officers, requires them to go through intense training. However, if schools are given firearms, there is a high likelihood that proper training would not fully take place. Teachers are already being pushed to the limits in hours and schools lack the necessary funding. Giving the teachers and schools even more tasks creates the likelihood of not having the proper time or money for firearm training, which in turn creates an unsafe environment. According to The 74, in Ohio, a law was approved that a teacher could carry a firearm in the classroom after just 24 hours of training. This is not a solution to the issue of gun violence. Schools are meant to be safe places for kids to learn and thrive in, not a place that they fear whether or not they will get to see their family again. Giving teachers access to these weapons doesn’t make school a healthy environment for students, it instills fear and anxiety. For many children even the sight of guns causes anxiety and fear, and it can be a very sensitive topic. Introducing regular gun use and guns as protection should not be the way children are kept out of harm’s way. Instead, it increases the risk of violence and the anxiety in the environment. 

  In many cases, students and parents oppose the idea of arming teachers. According to The 74, only 36 percent of parents oppose the idea of arming teachers. Having guns in a school zone is not the correct way to protect students. The correct way to protect students is stricter gun laws, such as stronger background checks and longer mandatory training hours to obtain a gun, as well as banning assault and automatic weapons. The last thing adults and students want is for a shooting to occur at their school or in their area. By placing more weapons in schools, one is handing the chance of a shooting over to the public.