Recently the local news did a story on a bill in the Pennsylvania Senate that would allow local school districts to decide whether teachers and other staff should be allowed to carry a weapon for protection.
This is a dangerous and ill-conceived idea. Why so many people think that the answer to ending school shootings is to provide more guns absolutely confounds me.
I taught in private and public schools for 10 years. I experienced many joys during my teaching career, no doubt. But some of my most profound professional disappointments also occurred during the years I taught school as well. That includes moments when I became unhinged, if I am being completely honest.
For the love of everything sacred, don't arm teachers. More guns means more senseless shootings, not less.
For one thing, what does the teacher do with her gun all day. Go through the school day packing? Lock it in her desk drawer? Use it as a starting pistol at track practice?
Teaching middle schoolers can be uncommonly stressful, for another. Students can enrage you. Parents, sometimes stressed beyond their limits, can insult you and reproach you when you least expect it, storming into your classroom when their child doesn't get the lead in the school play. Colleagues can undermine you and make you angry.
More guns make for a more dangerous working environment, not a safer one.
If you must have guns on school premises, leave them in the hands of trained law-enforcement professionals and keep them out of the hands of classroom teachers.
If this movement to have more guns on school premises isn't the greatest recruiting message for Mennonite-run schools such as Lancaster Mennonite (the Mennonites are a peace-loving faith), for whom guns and armed officers would be anathema, then I don't know what is.