Arming Teachers?

Are we really going to start arming teachers in Tennessee? Probably not.

With the passage of SB1325/HB1202, Tennessee joins 30 states in allowing teachers and administrators UNDER CERTAIN CONDITIONS to have concealed carry.

There are over 500 schools in Tennessee that don't have access to School Resource Officers (SRO's), primarily due to staff shortages at local law enforcement agencies. Teachers and administrators asked for this legislation.

There are very high hurdles to be cleared for a school employee to have concealed carry. Perhaps the highest hurdle is the school principal, director of schools, and local police chief or sheriff agreeing to a memorandum of understanding. In schools with existing SRO's, an agreement is highly unlikely (i.e., the three of them may conclude there is no need).

In urban areas, I assume it's a hard no. In rural areas, I expect there to be an agreement only if the principal, director of schools, and local police chief/sheriff have confidence in a specific school employee going armed.

If an agreement is reached, the school employee will have to undergo training, background check, psychological evaluation, fingerprinting, have a concealed carry permit, etc.

In other words, we passed a law that permits concealed carry by a school employee under very limited circumstances. In so doing, Tennessee joins 30 other states and, to my knowledge, there have been no negative outcomes nor have any states opted to repeal.

All three of our children attended rural public schools. Had there ever been an active shooter at one of their schools, I would have been eternally grateful to a school employee able to stop the threat.

Thanks for reading, Kerry