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Old December 15, 2012, 11:48 AM   #1
jtmckinney
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Texas School Where Teachers Carry

I hope I am following the rules for this forum. If not I am sure the Mods will do what they feel is right. Hopefully anyone that wishes to comment or answer my question will also follow the rules for this forum.

When reading the Ft. Worth Star Telegram this morning I ran across this.
< http://www.star-telegram.com/2012/12...ers-carry.html >

I was not aware this was an option available to a school district or school. I thought there was a Federal law proclaiming schools to be "No Gun Zones". Can schools option out of the "No Gun Zone".

Per this article this school was able to do this legally. Is this only a Texas thing? Do other states allow this?

I am truely saddend by what happened.
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Old December 15, 2012, 12:15 PM   #2
Don H
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Quote:
18 USC 922(q)(2)
(A)It shall be unlawful for any individual knowingly to possess a firearm that has moved in or that otherwise affects interstate or foreign commerce at a place that the individual knows, or has reasonable cause to believe, is a school zone.

(B)Subparagraph (A) does not apply to the possession of a firearm—
(i)on private property not part of school grounds;

(ii)if the individual possessing the firearm is licensed to do so by the State in which the school zone is located or a political subdivision of the State, and the law of the State or political subdivision requires that, before an individual obtains such a license, the law enforcement authorities of the State or political subdivision verify that the individual is qualified under law to receive the license;
If the state allows carry in school zones and in the school itself, and the state does not allow school districts to prohibit carry, then teachers, aides, janitors, parents, etc. can legally carry in schools.

In Utah it is relatively common for people, including school staff, with a permit to carry in public schools. If one has a Utah CFP (concealed carry permit) it also allows the carrier to open carry in public schools. Public schools have no authority to prohibit firearms. Private schools can, of course, set their own policy but it is not illegal to not abide by the policy. Failure by private school staff to abide by the school policy, however, may result in disciplinary action up to and including termination.
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Old December 15, 2012, 05:05 PM   #3
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If only every school district had this right.
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Old December 15, 2012, 05:22 PM   #4
Sparks1957
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As a high school teacher myself, I have a growing conviction that a few legally armed people in every school in the country would go a long way towards preventing tragedies like the ones we've seen.

Not just teachers, but a bunch of other professions may want to consider the idea as well.

The article Glenn just posted here shows that others are thinking similarly.

http://thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=509009

PS: To the moderators: I hope this post is within the parameters of allowable discussion

Last edited by Sparks1957; December 15, 2012 at 05:33 PM.
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Old December 15, 2012, 10:17 PM   #5
Tom Servo
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We don't want to discuss the Connecticut tragedy directly, as the facts aren't all in, and politicizing it wouldn't be in good taste.

However, the broader issue the OP raised is relevant. There's some confusion on this. As enacted, the GFSZA states:

Quote:
(A) It shall be unlawful for any individual knowingly to possess a firearm that has moved in or that otherwise affects interstate or foreign commerce at a place that the individual knows, or has reasonable cause to believe, is a school zone.

(B) Subparagraph (A) does not apply to the possession of a firearm—

(i) on private property not part of school grounds;

(ii) if the individual possessing the firearm is licensed to do so by the State in which the school zone is located or a political subdivision of the State, and the law of the State or political subdivision requires that, before an individual obtains such a license, the law enforcement authorities of the State or political subdivision verify that the individual is qualified under law to receive the license;
Many states have laws that are stricter, but Texas does not.
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Old December 15, 2012, 11:03 PM   #6
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Thanks Tom for leaving this open. Hopefully nothing will change that.

I have had some more time to think about this and realized my sons had a couple of teachers and school administrators that I think could have been trusted with this duty. Especially when my sons were in the lower grades. After Elementary school out involvement (mostly my wifes) wasn't as welcome. Of the two I would most have trusted one was male and the other female, probably others but these were the ones I had some contact with.

My wife has driven a school bus for over 15 years. I would also trust her if the situation called for the extream intervention we are talking about.

Responsed so far have been great and hopefully those that only viewed this thread also took something of value from it.

Sparks, the link you posted was "Spot On".

I do not have the wit to express the way the event makes me feel!
James
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Old December 16, 2012, 12:53 AM   #7
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General question regarding school grounds: Obviously public schools fall under all these laws, however, what if the elementary school was private? Could the principal or teachers have ccw's and carry (in theory) if the school board allowed it?
Mind you I'm not talking about Texas where it has more lax laws regarding this issue.
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Old December 16, 2012, 03:32 AM   #8
raimius
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As I understand it, as long as one has a permit issued by the state where the school is, and the state/local laws don't prohibit carrying at a school, it would be legal. That doesn't mean that schools will not have policies against it (although state preemption laws may influence public school's latitude).
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Old December 16, 2012, 03:44 AM   #9
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Since I'm a teacher I'll throw my two cents in.

I have my permit, but even if I could carry at school I'm not sure I would and the reason why has to do with how police react in an active shooting situation.

We had a training 2 years ago with the local police about what to do in the event of a shooting. We were told that even if we get the chance to pick up a gun in a shooting situation not to, because when the police show up they will kill anyone who has a gun.

Given that piece of knowledge I'm not sure I'd want to have a gun in an active shooting situation.

Besides I teach science and I have gallons of hydrochloric acid in my classroom. My kids know that in the event of an active shooter, we lock the doors and fill beakers with acid. If the door opens, the person who opens it will get a beaker full of HCL in their face. I don't care how much body armor you wear, the HCL will find some expose spot and BURN LIKE HELL.
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Old December 16, 2012, 05:50 AM   #10
Dr Big Bird PhD
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Quote:
We had a training 2 years ago with the local police about what to do in the event of a shooting. We were told that even if we get the chance to pick up a gun in a shooting situation not to, because when the police show up they will kill anyone who has a gun.
This is so wrong my eyes are almost bleeding.

Besides the valueless judgement and functional disarmament, they cops are essentially saying "run like cowards because we're gonna kill anyone that stands their ground".
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Old December 16, 2012, 07:56 AM   #11
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While I agree that the statement is wrong, I would also disagree that the statement is some sort of blatant anti-rights statement. It isn't. What the cop is explaining is that the cops would shoot anyone who appears to be a threat. If true, that is definitely on the wrong end of how to handle things as it shows a complete lack of target identification and lack of proper training. What is more likely the case is that the cops have the potential to shoot anyone that they see as a threat in such events and non-clearly identified as cops with guns in such events could and likely would be perceived as a threat. This happens with some regularity with undercover cops getting shot. So in this regard, the problem is a reality that COULD happen.

However, in most cases where cops are involved, they do give warnings before shooting. That isn't to say that the shootees always hear the warnings, but this does happen.

Falcon, I don't think you would have a lot to worry about in an active shooter situation at your school. Assuming you don't have an SRO on property, you will undoubtedly have 3-15 minutes before cops even arrive on scene. That is a LONG time. There would be a lot of defending you might need to do in that time frame. So weigh out the consideration. Do you worry about the active shooter killing you now or do you worry about the possibility of being killed by a confused cop? Which would be more likely? The answer is that the former would be more likely. You gotta handle first problems first. Ask Dan McKown about his fear of getting shot by cops and instead being riddled by the Tacoma Mall shooter.
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Old December 16, 2012, 07:56 AM   #12
jtmckinney
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Please let's stay on task so this can remain open. I also think the quote that Dr Big Bird echoed is totally wrong and the plan about HCL is not a good one for many many reasons. Again please let's stay on task.

My wife beng a bus driver and active in the community knows the local police. I am also thinking the school administrators have a lot of contact with the local police. If a program like this were to happen I am sure the police would be aware and hopefully even train with any teachers or administrators that were participating. We are all on the same side. The locked Sticky in "Tactics and Training" that Sparks referred to also echoes this.

Have a great day!
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Old December 16, 2012, 08:07 AM   #13
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I carry every single day in my classroom.

I also keep my HCl in a locked cabinet per OSHA. Nothing beats a firearm on my person.
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Old December 16, 2012, 08:12 AM   #14
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Looks like Michigan passed it and sent it to Gov to sign.

http://thinkprogress.org/justice/201...uns-classroom/
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Old December 16, 2012, 08:37 AM   #15
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Hal with respect you said "Looks like Michigan passed it and sent it to Gov to sign." I am not sure "it" is the same or even close to the program implimented in 2008 in the small town in Texas. I also did not get the impression thinkprogress.org is friendly to the 2nd Ammendment or gun rights.

What the Texas school did was not done in a vacuum. The article I linked to left many details out and there was resistance but they were able to do what they thought in the best interest of the children under their responsibility.

Have a great day!
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Old December 16, 2012, 08:53 AM   #16
Sparks1957
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Quote:
Besides I teach science and I have gallons of hydrochloric acid in my classroom. My kids know that in the event of an active shooter, we lock the doors and fill beakers with acid. If the door opens, the person who opens it will get a beaker full of HCL in their face
If you are a science teacher and are keeping "gallons of HCl" in your classroom, I would say you are being pretty reckless. You do know that HCl is a fuming acid, right? Pouring a beakerful of 12M HCl outside a fume hood is likely to be harmful to you and the kids. Think about this.

I teach chemistry exclusively, and there is nothing in my chemical storeroom that would be a substitute for a firearm.

Quote:
I carry every single day in my classroom
Edit: How common is classroom carry in Utah?

Last edited by Sparks1957; December 16, 2012 at 10:15 AM.
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Old December 16, 2012, 09:22 AM   #17
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Arming most teachers is not a good idea. I'm glad some teachers I had weren't. LOL Anyway, if students knew there were guns hidden in classrooms, some might find a way to get them.

Schools should be better designed to thwart such attacks, but bear in mind that the military is not fully protected against terrorist acts, nor are police station, so we can't expect to make our schools into bombproof bunkers, nor make school buses like armored personnel carriers.

Even armed guards in schools wouldn't fully protect students, because they're targets and not often adequately armed to prevent mass slaughter by well-armed crazies. Trying to hit a protected invader among a mass of students would probably not work.

Still, schools can be better designed to protect people in classrooms. Doors and windows can be hardened without creating a prison atmosphere that is detrimental to learning. Exterior doors can be locked during school, but still open-able from the inside in case of fire, etc. Emergency exits to the outside in classrooms may also be a good thing, especially in fires and other emergencies.
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Old December 16, 2012, 09:26 AM   #18
Sparks1957
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Quote:
Arming most teachers is not a good idea
This is probably true. The majority of teachers would not have the will to use a weapon to protect our kids, but that doesn't mean that some of us don't. It would have to be voluntary, of course, with a certain amount of required training.

Quote:
Still, schools can be better designed to protect people in classrooms
No doubt about that. I think about our building with its 8 entrances, and how most anyone can get in any of them, anytime. There's a lot that could be done to harden schools as targets, but it requires dropping the denial that bad things could happen to your school. Many schools are struggling to make ends meet financially as well, and more security involves money.
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Old December 16, 2012, 09:39 AM   #19
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The Philippines had problem back in the 60s with the Moros and communist terrorist assassinating Teachers and kidnapping students. They issued each teacher an M-1 garand and other weapons for use in the class room.

This effectively stopped the killings and kidnappings.
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Old December 16, 2012, 09:49 AM   #20
Sparks1957
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Quote:
if students knew there were guns hidden in classrooms, some might find a way to get them
Storing firearms in school would be an incredibly bad idea. They would have to be on the person of a legal carrier 100.1% of the time, no exceptions. Concealed carry would have to be required, as well.
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Old December 16, 2012, 10:16 AM   #21
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Flinging acid in a tight classroom is fantasy. Say goodbye to your hands. Also got shot and spill it all over yourself.

Also, we have many large classrooms and lecture venues. Easily targeted.

Every argument against carry in the school, applies to religious institutions or malls. Crowded, confusion, panic, friendly fire, etc.

However, I support carry in all. I do strongly say I have no sympathy for those who want to carry and haven't taken the time to get a modicum of training as compared to just saying they 'would take him' out.
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Old December 16, 2012, 10:23 AM   #22
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up until the 70s many schools stored firearms in the school. Those arms were to support the rifle team.
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Old December 16, 2012, 10:33 AM   #23
Sparks1957
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Yes, I know that. It's not the 70s anymore, and having guns stored in schools now would be very different.

Quote:
I do strongly say I have no sympathy for those who want to carry and haven't taken the time to get a modicum of training as compared to just saying they 'would take him' out
I do have to say that, while I support "carry everywhere", Glenn is absolutely right that folks need to inspect their own motives why they would want to carry in schools, and be willing to get the training and self-discipline that would be needed.

Last edited by Sparks1957; December 16, 2012 at 10:38 AM.
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Old December 16, 2012, 10:43 AM   #24
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Besides being the worst classroom defense I've ever heard of, using HCl, one of the least aggressive acids, will almost certainly guarantee your demise.
Chemical weapons have a history of biting back. When you are unarmed, your best defense is still feets don't fail me now! Run the herd out of barn.
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Old December 16, 2012, 11:08 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sparks1957 View Post
Yes, I know that. It's not the 70s anymore, and having guns stored in schools now would be very different.
It went on WAY past the '70s. My school had a rifle team until several years after I graduated, which was 1993.

However, single shot, bolt action 22short rifles aren't exactly massacre or defensive arms. I'd consider them essentially irrelevant from any angle.
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