Arming School Staff

Data shows schools that allow trained staff to carry guns are much safer than those that don’t.

The national debate on whether or not to arm teachers is constantly gaining attention and has divided many. With the disturbing rise in school shootings, our country seems split between calling for gun bans, and in contrast, advocating for increased gun use.

While heightened attention to this divisive concept has occurred recently, arming teachers is not a new approach. There are currently 20 states and hundreds of school districts across the U.S. that have been granting teachers and other school staff permission to carry guns while on school property.

Taking personal feelings and politics out of the equation, the data and research can and should stand for itself.

The president of the Crime Prevention Research Center, John Lott, uncovered that there has not been a single instance where someone was wounded or killed from shootings at schools that allow teachers to carry guns. Research has shown that there has yet to be a mass public shooting during the times of 6 AM and midnight at institutes where teachers are legally armed.

Lott’s extensive research shows that the average death or injury rate due to shootings across all schools (including those with armed teachers) is 0.039 per 100,000 students. When it comes to just schools with armed teachers, the rate is an astonishing 0 per 100,000.

There have not been any significant problems at schools that allow for armed teachers, but for other schools where guns are banned, gun violence has continued to wreak havoc.

Many parents and critics have voiced concerns that students could come in contact with teachers’ firearms and use them for violence. However, there has not been an instance so far where a student obtained a teacher’s gun. If anything, the words “gun-free zone” should make people nervous since it has been shown that this term is much more likely to attract criminals rather than deter them.

The FBI recorded the reason that an Islamic State sympathizer chose a large church in Detroit to enact a mass shooting: “It’s easy, and a lot of people go there. Plus people are not allowed to carry guns in church.”

It takes time for police officers to respond and arrive at school locations. A few moments is all it takes for shooters to claim numerous innocent lives. With teachers and other staff being armed, stopping shootings could be an instantaneous occurrence.

Europe has seen three of the five worst K-12 school shooting tragedies. All of these have occurred in gun-free zones. This is also true of every school in the United States where a mass shooting has happened. The evidence between allowing school staff to carry guns versus those who do not is staggering.

The allowing of weapons in schools is not taken lightly. Often, teachers are required to pass extensive background checks, drug tests, firearm training, and other requirements before they are allowed to carry on school property.

Bullets Both Ways is determined to increase the protection of American schools. Providing proper gun knowledge and training to teachers and other staff is a reality through them. Bullets Both Ways recognizes the indisputable fact that schools that have armed teachers are safer. Our nation’s schools are made safer by the ability to have bullets going both ways rather than just coming one direction from an unchallenged perpetrator.

By Amalia White