To what extent should teachers go to protect their students
By Angelina Cazar
SAN MARCOS– President Donald Trump has made a proposal to arm teachers K-12 immediately after the parkland shooting that took place a month ago, which leaves people at Texas State with mixed feelings about gun control.
Since the beginning of 2018, there have been about 18 school shootings, causing a split between citizens on whether there should be new laws over gun control. President Trump has been pushing to make this bill happen by offering teachers a bonus. According to Gallup, about 73 percent of teachers opposed to carrying a firearm.
With over half of teachers in the U.S opposing this proposal, there are still schools allowing firearm on campus. For instance, Texas State is one school that allows students and faculty to carry concealed guns.
With over half of teachers in the U.S opposing this proposal, there are still schools allowing firearm on campus. Not only teachers are against this bill, but as well as some students and parents.
Melissa Matthew is a 10th grade High School teacher. She explains the mixed feelings she has as a parent with teachers carrying guns on school grounds.
“The only way I would support arming teachers is if a list of very strict criteria was met,” said Matthew. “Unfortunately, I have worked with other teachers that would not want to be armed at all because they don’t seem emotionally stable. So, as you can see I am a little on the fence still about this topic, but I probably lean more towards it is not a viable solution.”
Although some agree on arming teachers if criteria and training were met, some disagree and believe it is the best solution to protect students. Alec Garza, 20-year-old Texas State student states the real problem is not the guns, it is choosing the right person who has access to them.
“yes, and I feel it is a good security measure to be taking place and I don’t think it should be mandated that every single teacher should be armed, the ones who want to opt-in that do have the background with guns and experience with firearms,” said Garza. “It’s not just getting a random teacher a gun and saying knock yourself out, protect these kids. Its people who like I said, have the experience, have the know-how, and they’re going above and beyond willing to risk their lives for their students by willingly putting themselves in that situation.”
President Trump suggests that armed teachers should receive extra pay as an incentive, According to The New York Times. Some feel that upgrading the pay can be a good thing since they will be putting teachers through extensive training and risking their lives to protect students. In contrast, Officer Otto Glenewinkel believes that extra money should go to hiring more officers to protect students. Not to have teachers get paid more to carry a gun when there is people out there who are trained for that position.
“It would be nice, but it is going to compel people to want to carry a gun, just for the added expense,” said Glenewinkel. “Those people would be excited and be all about signing up, just to get extra money. Okay, I want to carry a gun just so I can get paid $5,000 more a year.”
Some people want to do everything they can to protect students, but what they don’t realize is guns are not always the answer. Alma Zamora, a criminal justice major student at Texas State, believes a way to protect students from school shootings is to educate them more over the situation.
“I believe that arming the educators will not deduct the problem, adding education about the problem will be helpful,” said Zamora. “Taking more time informing the students on how to take upon a situation like this when it occurs. This would perpetuate the idea of arms and it would send the wrong message to younger students.”
Although educating students about school shootings could help prevent the situations, there are some that feel there are both sides to this proposal. Laura Ortiz, a 23-year-old Texas State student, is not against arming teachers, but thinks the problem is how teachers will be able to handle their emotions when the situation occurs.
“Shooters in schools typically tend to be students, and that teacher has to be mentally prepared that at the end of the day he/she may have to end up shooting one of his/her own students,” said Ortiz. “And it may be heartbreaking and terrible but, do the ends justify the means? It just gets all shades of grey at this point.”
President Donald Trump is trying to make this bill into a law. Although most citizens don’t agree on arming teachers, they can agree on doing everything they can to end school shootings and protecting students.
Visit http://www.txstate.edufor information