Arming Teachers…is it a New Direction For Safety?

Posted on: February 9th, 2015
There has been a significant amount of discussion about how to keep your schools safer for kids since the Sandy Hook and several other shootings over the past few years. This is a good thing and it hopefully will continue so more ideas can be brought forth to help curb the violence and help make schools a safer place. Some are radical, some are weak, but without discussion, there is no chance of the good ideas coming to the surface.

One idea that has come to the surface is in Dora Missouri. Last year they started training teachers to shoot guns, understand how to use them, and most importantly, how to increase security in their schools. There was a great article in Ozarks First that talked about this, “Teachers with Guns Train for School Shootings.” They describe how they are going about helping their teachers be more prepared for an attack on the school and to hopefully better protect their students.

There were several parts of this program I thought were very innovative and seemed to make sense after reading how they are approaching the issue.
  • First, they are going about this correctly from the start by identifying the teachers who want to participate in the program and from this get the necessary training. The training isn’t just how to shoot a gun at a target but is also oriented about how to handle situations. It is designed around safety first and then how to handle a firearm.
  • Second, it takes the gun training a step further and actually puts them in the situation where there are massive amounts of chaos and turmoil to see how they react and what they should be doing to secure their classroom and school. This is essential in my opinion to simulate the role of the event as close as possible so if it happens, everything isn’t foreign.
  • Third, they are taking other precautions to help the school be safe and secure. This involves adding locks on all the doors, installing bullet proof glass in certain areas, and other such measures to help protect the school and not just relying on teachers carrying a firearm.
  • Fourth, you don’t know who has the guns. This is a great step in the process because not every teacher is carrying a firearm. Why is this important? The element of surprise. If someone comes into a school and thinks everyone has a gun, they can either attempt to disarm them or even worse, take the gun and use it. Here, there is an element of surprise because you don’t know who is armed and who isn’t.
I am anxious to see if other schools follow suit to what they are doing in Dora. This is a step in the right direction if handled and executed properly. Doing something like this half-way is potentially more dangerous but doing it right could save many lives…our kid’s lives. I will be following this and other stories that are going down this path and share them with you as well.

In the meantime…what do you think? Do you like this idea? Whether you do or don’t, let’s talk about it and share your thoughts…this is how great ideas develop!
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