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Topic: A question for our teachers/educators...< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 01 2013, 11:51 am  Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

The local paper had a poll about what to do with school security in the wake of the recent incidents. The majority of the polltakers (30%) responded, "Arm all teachers". The next top choice was locking schools and installing an alarm system (29%).

I am curious what the educators (retired and current) think about this.

I realize that with any banter this goes straight to the Political cesspool, so please reserve your comments and stay civil. I don't want that kind of discussion or I would have posted it there.

Looking mostly for comments from the educators themselves, rather than discussion on the topic.
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 01 2013, 12:02 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I've got some fellow teachers that I wouldn't want within 10 miles of a gun.  They'd either shoot themselves accidentally or leave it laying somewhere.   We have one teacher who habitually looses her keys.  There are others I'd trust completely with a gun like our Supt. whose been a coon hunter for years.  Myself, I'm in between.  I trust myself with a gun, but I'm not sure I'd have the temperment to carry one all the time like law enforcement.

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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 01 2013, 12:10 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

My husband and I have taught for 27 years and I would hate to see teachers armed.  I have been threatened with a gun and had to deal with a lot of bad situations, because for a while I was teaching a class for "severely Emotionally disturbed" students — who often had parents who also could qualify.  My good friend has taught 30 years in the State Penitentiary and often comments about how he thinks he is safer where he teaches than we are.  I know some teachers who are good with guns and some teachers who are hot tempered and sometimes they are the same person.  We have deputies at our schools instead of the counselors we used to have anyway, so guns are there, I just don't want to be expected to be armed.

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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 01 2013, 1:22 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

the high school I attended has had armed police officers (the district has its own police force) for years.  I think that's reasonable.  I don't think it's wise to put a gun in the hands of all of the teachers, and I agree with what previous posters have already said about it.

schools I've been to recently also in large part have a strict security protocol during school hours where you have to be buzzed in through security doors and stop at the main office before being permitted to visit the rest of the school.  possibly more widely implementing those protocols and strengthening them at schools that do not implement them well seems wise to me.

my high school also had metal detectors going for students in the morning.  every day they did the students who drove themselves, and they'd do the bussed students on a rotating basis (buses unloaded at 2 or 3 separate entrances and they didn't have enough metal detectors or security personnel to get them at every door every day), but they'd randomly move the detectors so you couldn't predict what day you wouldn't get scanned/searched.


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 01 2013, 2:31 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Does being a school board member count?  

I think arming all teachers is an idiotic notion, for many of the reasons listed by other commenters.  From my perspective, the liability is huge.  ONE teacher leaves ONE gun lying around and a kid gets hold of it--you are in such deep carp.  Ours is a K-8 district, so I'm also thinking about teachers and administrators who are often in close contact with kids, helping them with things, comforting the ones who are crying. . . would they have to do all that with a side-arm strapped on?  Again, how long before something bad happened?  And when it does, I don't care how much the intention was protecting the children, the District will be liable, admin and Board will be blamed for putting the kids in harm's way.  And I consider that outcome MUCH more likely than that a shooter will come into a school (something that will happen at any given school once in several thousand years)


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 01 2013, 2:50 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I'm not a teacher, but recently had this discussion with a friend who is a teacher. She is very experienced with handguns, and owns a few. She said she would NOT want to be armed in the classroom. She said if there is a school shooting (or whatever) happening, she will have 20-25 kids to deal with, without having to deal with a gun. She said she cannot imagine a teacher actually shooting a gun with a classroom full of scared kids.

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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 01 2013, 3:26 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I'm not a teacher and I apologize if I'm breaking the rules.  :D   My son and his best friend were talking about this in the car last night.   Both boys mentioned a few of their teachers that are known to be klutzy or ditsy, and a few bordering on senile. The boys thought the whole prospect was pretty comical and suggested it would make a good reality TV show...

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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 01 2013, 3:52 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Well, to be fair I don't think the intent was ever to arm all teachers.  Just the ones that want to carry in the classroom and have a permit to do so.

However...

I wouldn't call myself a highly "experienced" teacher, but I did teach high school for five years in two low-income city school districts.  And I think it's a bad idea.  The teachers that would be most eager to do this are some of the ones I would feel least safe having one there ("decent teacher" does necessarily equate to "to be trusted with a firearm full time in a classroom").  As Rebecca pointed out, the odds of a horrible accident happening from that arrangement are at least an order of magnitude higher than the odds a teacher would successfully defend a school from a crazed shooter.  It's a cost-benefit thing, and the proponents tout the benefit without honestly looking at the cost.

My own $.02 anyway, just based on my own experiences in the classroom and with colleagues.  Which isn't a double-blind control study by any means.


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 01 2013, 4:01 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(Woodswoman @ Feb. 01 2013, 2:50 pm)
QUOTE
I'm not a teacher, but recently had this discussion with a friend who is a teacher. She is very experienced with handguns, and owns a few. She said she would NOT want to be armed in the classroom. She said if there is a school shooting (or whatever) happening, she will have 20-25 kids to deal with, without having to deal with a gun. She said she cannot imagine a teacher actually shooting a gun with a classroom full of scared kids.

With all due respect to your friend, I bet that if there is a shooter in the school and the kids are huddled in a corner of the classroom, she would be praying for a gun.

I totally agree with Rebecca's position though. The guns are a liability whenever the school isn't being attacked (which hopefully means they're always a liability).


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 01 2013, 5:06 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(wycanislatrans @ Feb. 01 2013, 9:51 am)
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The local paper had a poll about what to do with school security in the wake of the recent incidents. The majority of the polltakers (30%) responded, "Arm all teachers". The next top choice was locking schools and installing an alarm system (29%).

Last time I checked, it took over 50% to have a "majority"
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 01 2013, 5:33 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(WalksWithBlackflies @ Feb. 01 2013, 4:01 pm)
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With all due respect to your friend, I bet that if there is a shooter in the school and the kids are huddled in a corner of the classroom, she would be praying for a gun.

But that's a highly unlikely situation to occur in the first place. A much more likely situation to occur, if teachers are armed, would be any of the following:

The gun discharges accidentally, harming someone.
A student finds the gun and shoots himself or someone else.
The teacher has mental health issues and loses it one day and takes out the entire class.
Schools become targets of gun thieves and more end up in the wrong hands due to the fact that so many teachers are packing heat.
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 01 2013, 6:54 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(Lamebeaver @ Feb. 01 2013, 3:06 pm)
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(wycanislatrans @ Feb. 01 2013, 9:51 am)
QUOTE
The local paper had a poll about what to do with school security in the wake of the recent incidents. The majority of the polltakers (30%) responded, "Arm all teachers". The next top choice was locking schools and installing an alarm system (29%).

Last time I checked, it took over 50% to have a "majority"

There was more than two options in this poll. I only listed the top two. So if I have 4 options and three of them are less than 30% (25% or less) that would make 30% a majority over the rest.

I'm also not directly refering to the nationwide discussion (aside from the fact that this local poll was prompted by that) and I am quoting what the local paper wrote when the top choice was to "Arm all teachers"

I was just a little shocked (even in WY) that people would think that was a rational solution. Having known many teachers personally I don't think the majority of them would even go for it. So I was curious enough to poke the knowledge of our educators here.

So far the results are as I expected.
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 01 2013, 11:32 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

The intent isnt that every teacher carry a gun, some dont want to and others shouldnt. Many are capable and many are competent to do so, outside of the work place they enjoy the right to carry a concealed weapon. Teachers who carry a gun look the same as those who dispise guns. A teacher can carry a "consealed weapon" and nobody would ever know it. The president is surrounded by armed guards and they look like perfect gentlemen dressed in nice suits. Why take away this option of providing an additional level of security our children?
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 01 2013, 11:57 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(Mountaintana @ Feb. 01 2013, 11:32 pm)
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Teachers who carry a gun look the same as those who dispise guns.

I'm not sure I've ever met a teacher who "despised" guns. Sounds made up.
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 02 2013, 2:07 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

another point worth making is that the teachers would need training on more than just shooting.

I know teachers who have been assaulted from behind in the hallways.  that is a potential situation you're going to have to address.  you cannot have armed teachers being assaulted from behind and their firearms being taken from them during a busy passing period.

it is putting too much on underpaid teachers who have too much to think about over the course of the day as it is.


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 02 2013, 2:53 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Jumping in late... but there's also the great potential of getting sued.   You shot my boy.....

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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 02 2013, 5:42 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(wycanislatrans @ Feb. 01 2013, 6:54 pm)
QUOTE

(Lamebeaver @ Feb. 01 2013, 3:06 pm)
QUOTE

(wycanislatrans @ Feb. 01 2013, 9:51 am)
QUOTE
The local paper had a poll about what to do with school security in the wake of the recent incidents. The majority of the polltakers (30%) responded, "Arm all teachers". The next top choice was locking schools and installing an alarm system (29%).

Last time I checked, it took over 50% to have a "majority"

There was more than two options in this poll. I only listed the top two. So if I have 4 options and three of them are less than 30% (25% or less) that would make 30% a majority over the rest.

I'm also not directly refering to the nationwide discussion (aside from the fact that this local poll was prompted by that) and I am quoting what the local paper wrote when the top choice was to "Arm all teachers"

I was just a little shocked (even in WY) that people would think that was a rational solution. Having known many teachers personally I don't think the majority of them would even go for it. So I was curious enough to poke the knowledge of our educators here.

So far the results are as I expected.

Then that would be a plurality. Lamebeaver is correct, "majority" is 50%+1. As an example, looking at the poll you cited, a majority (70%) selected something other than "arm all teachers."

In addition, since we are dealing with a poll that asked a sample of teachers then there is a statistical margin of error around each and every result, meaning that the 30% and 29% results are, statistically, a tie.

I'm not an educator and was content to just read this discussion, just wanted to chime in on some word and math definitions.


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 02 2013, 6:25 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(GoBlueHiker @ Feb. 01 2013, 3:52 pm)
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Well, to be fair I don't think the intent was ever to arm all teachers.  Just the ones that want to carry in the classroom and have a permit to do so.

Actually, I believe the poll in question said "arm all teachers".

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(JRinGeorgia @ Feb. 02 2013, 3:42 pm)
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In addition, since we are dealing with a poll that asked a sample of teachers

Just to be fair, I don't think the original poll asked just teachers.  It was a random sample of the local population.

And also to be fair, I guess TigerFan above is right... one of the options (as stated) among others was "arm all teachers", although I have trouble believing anyone who's really thought it through would consider that a good idea.


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 02 2013, 7:01 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I'm guessing it was an online poll. Those aren't the most accurate sources of opinion.
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 02 2013, 7:04 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

No guns for teachers. Idiot idea. I am nut a gun control idiot. Armed teachers is a dangerous idea. Most would be inept and there is the danger of students getting control of the guns and, at the very least, "showing"off. The time it takes to get the gun out is too late. Most teachers would not have the sense of when to whip the gun out. Regardless of training they are not law enforcement/soldier trained people.

At the start, all outside doors need to be locked all the time and visitors need to be screened as OK.

Teachers need to be trained in what to do if an intruder gets in the school. Secure the door. Not just lock it. Pile stuff against the door. Rope off the knob in case an intruder gets the keys to the room from the dead principal.

If in the room then attack. Throw staplers, books, whatever. Use scissors, pens. You are are going to die so attack. Make it the place not to be and the place to move on from. To lay passively, ala under a table as in Columbine, doesn't work.

Don't have the principal walk around the school making sure the doors are locked with his keys in hand. The bad guys can get them then after killing the principal.  Practice for the problem.

Have a "real" warning system. Also, have teachers be aware and if they perceive danger then react on their own regardless of the office and intruder codes.

Time. Most attacks are short in time. Look at the attacks that have happened. Make it so each room entry is time consuming. That gives the police time to get there.


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 02 2013, 7:10 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Many schools have a method for going into lock down simply by hitting a button in the front office. Seems to me the teachers should have access to this via a smart phone app. If there's trouble, the teacher presses the button on their phone, the school is locked down, and the authorities are alerted. The fist call made is to the teacher who triggered the lock down to get the details.
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 02 2013, 8:30 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Those misinterpreting and misreading the details are pretty much missing the point.
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(GoBlueHiker @ Feb. 02 2013, 4:51 pm)
QUOTE
And also to be fair, I guess TigerFan above is right... one of the options (as stated) among others was "arm all teachers", although I have trouble believing anyone who's really thought it through would consider that a good idea.

That's exactly what shocked me.
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 02 2013, 8:47 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Twenty years ago we were having a reading picnic lunch. Everyone in the school out on blankets with parents and picture books. It was great community fun. Then a hush goes around. Someone with a gun was spotted in the forest adjacent to the playground. The principal ordered the AM kindergarten teacher, the only one who had no class still on site, to walk the perimeter with a radio as someone quietly walked around and told each class to go back to their room and lock down.

Now security is not much different. There is a sign, "all visitors required to check in at office" but no enforcement. In the office you sign a check in sheet and take a visitors sticker but most schools have external hallways and a lot of classes have doors on two sides, one to the parking lot and one to the playground. Doors are never locked when class is in session unless there is a lockdown. Heck kids come and go all the time, to speech or counseling or computer lab or running errands.

What's my point? Just that we are just starting to think about this seriously here.


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 02 2013, 8:59 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(Mountaintana @ Feb. 01 2013, 11:32 pm)
QUOTE
The intent isnt that every teacher carry a gun, some dont want to and others shouldnt. Many are capable and many are competent to do so, outside of the work place they enjoy the right to carry a concealed weapon. Teachers who carry a gun look the same as those who dispise guns. A teacher can carry a "consealed weapon" and nobody would ever know it. The president is surrounded by armed guards and they look like perfect gentlemen dressed in nice suits. Why take away this option of providing an additional level of security our children?

Seems like the general consensus amongst the teachers here is that the children would be less safe if weapons were present on campus.  

Are you a teacher?


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 02 2013, 11:29 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I believe our campus would be less safe if "certain" teachers have weapons.  I do believe it helps to have armed security in our schools.  (I'm a 41 year old teaching vet.)

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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 02 2013, 11:35 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

My opinion: Just because you have the right to carry a weapon, doesn't mean you are trained to use it as a person trained to protect others (ongoing training to the point of instinct). Teachers having guns in school for the purpose of protecting children is a bad idea. If they have to go that far, they can hire guards with training instead. Let the teachers focus on teaching.

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(Tigger @ Feb. 02 2013, 11:35 pm)
QUOTE
My opinion: Just because you have the right to carry a weapon, doesn't mean you are trained to use it as a person trained to protect others (ongoing training to the point of instinct). Teachers having guns in school for the purpose of protecting children is a bad idea. If they have to go that far, they can hire guards with training instead. Let the teachers focus on teaching.

I have to agree.

There are many hobbyists that shoot in competition, 3 gun matches and USPSA matches among others. They put in the time and the resources to hone their skills.
It takes a lot of practice, but there are "civilians" out there, and many of them with marksmanship skills that would amaze you.
However, they are a very tiny percentage. To become proficient takes a lot of time and practice. Much more than most people have the time for. And very few of them have ever had to face a real situation.

I don't know what the solution is, but just having a carry gun is simply not an option for a lot of people. Carrying a gun in a place where situations are always bad when they start with all the rest of the chaos to deal with once again, is an option for even fewer.

I think dedicated guards are the answer with training. And I'm not talking about some BS training like qualifying once a year with the little local PD. It's a joke as I have done it. I'm talking about logging in some real training and trigger time  on a course like practical pistol or a combat course at least 6 times a year.
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 03 2013, 10:14 am Skip to the previous post in this topic.  Ignore posts   QUOTE

Not a teacher here either.

I am in the No camp as well. Without continually defensible space guns are liabilities, period. Unless teachers were able to get behind indestructible glass without any proximity to students its a powder keg waiting to happen IMO, and I don't want teachers having less contact with their students, with the widespread failure of parenting in this day and age school is for far too many students all they have.

By the time I was 16 I could have beaten the kwap out of all but 1 or 2 teachers I'd ever had. It would have been next to nothing to knock them senseless and take whatever I wanted to from them.


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