Arkansas Arming Teachers: Will It Make Schools Safer?

Schools in the Arkansas district are to start arming their teachers with guns, come the fall. This is so that they can protect themselves if someone pulls a gun on them while at work.

David Hopkins, Superintendent at the Clarksville High School in Arkansas, said that staff members there will start carrying concealed handguns, beginning in August. He spoke about the fact that most schools throughout America don’t have a solid contingency plan for dealing with gun crimes in schools:

“The plan we’ve been given in the past is ‘Well, lock your doors, turn off your lights and hope for the best’… That’s not a plan.”

Due to an anomaly in the state law of Arkansas, it is permitted to have armed guards in schools. Come August when classes resume in the school, teachers there will be armed and will be also considered guards.

Each member of staff who is to be armed will receive $1,100 to buy their weapon, the school will contribute over $50,000 towards training the staff to shoot and for ammunition.

Cheyne Dougan, the assistant principal of the school took a Nighthawk Training Course to teach him how to handle a weapon. He told reporters:

“There’s pressure on you, because you’re shooting real bullets if this actually happened. I was nervous to start, but once it started and I was going through what they had taught us, it just took over.”

Not everyone though is totally happy about the idea of Arkansas arming teachers, claiming it will lead to more shooting incidents in schools. Donna Morey, the former President of the Arkansas Education Association said: “We just think educators should be in the business of educating students, not carrying a weapon.”

Signs are to be clearly posted in schools which are participating in the program, so that students will be made fully aware of the consequences that pulling a gun will bring.

Do you think it’s good that Arkansas is arming its teachers with handguns? Will it increase or reduce gun crime in schools? Share your opinion in the comments below.

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