Arming Teachers: an Opinion Piece


Joaquin Holcomb, Writer

With school shootings in the headlines in recent years, and lockdown drills happening in local schools often, some have suggested that teachers be armed to help prevent additional violence. 

In an active shooter situation,  there’s not much a teacher or a student can do to protect themselves. Many believe arming teachers is one solution. 

Arming teachers would provide protection for both students and themselves. However, it should not be something forced on teachers. A teacher uncomfortable with handling a weapon could be very dangerous. Teachers should ask for the responsibility of arming themselves.

However, it shouldn’t be as easy as volunteering for such a responsibility. Many factors should be taken into account before making a decision on who to arm: mental stability, religious beliefs, results of background checks, licenses, storage of the firearm, etc.  The school system should carefully select faculty members who are stable and have experience with firearms, such as ex-military and law enforcement. 

And while there are many pros to arming teachers, there are also cons and questions. Where would the firearm be stored? If needed, how would it be accessed? Would the weapons be school system-owned or independently-owned firearms? How do schools guarantee students won’t be able to get a hold of the weapon? Why should teachers be armed if there are campus officers? Would arming teachers put resource officers out of a job?

Potential solutions to these problems would be to keep the firearm in a secure safe in the class that is easy to access for the teachers, but not students. If the student does get a hold of the firearm the school should punish him/her accordingly. School officers should not be fired– arming teachers would simply add more safety to the school. 

Arming teachers could potentially keep schools safer for everyone inside the building if carefully considered, planned, and carried out.