Making Things Worse

I thought that I was done with my two cents efforts on the topic of arming teachers.  I think I summed my feelings up nicely in a post I called “Why You Wouldn’t Want to Arm Me“.  My feelings have not changed, for the record.

Today, I read this story “600 Teachers Apply to Learn How to Shoot a Gun at School” which brought the whole thing back to the forefront of my mind.  Do we really want wild west justice dished out in the halls of our schools?  I think about my old classroom.  Right across the hall was the Marketing Classroom.  Our doors were immediately opposite.  I just had visions of taking a shot at someone in the doorway, missing, and the bullet going across the hall into that classroom.

From there, the walls are cinder blocks.  With any luck, a bullet might hit a block right on and get stuck in the block.  But, it could bounce on a crazy angle and then it’s in a classroom with students.  Or, I might hit the metal door that was always open on an angle and it take off from there.  Do these plans that include putting guns into schools take into consideration that there may be people hit by “friendly fire”?  Does “friendly fire” somehow make it better?

What could be worse than stray gunfire bouncing inside a classroom or down a hallway?

I know – bring in the lawyers!

Also in the news this week was this story “Newtown Lawsuit Withdrawn—for Now“.  Absolutely no one can imagine the pain and anguish that the students who survived the incident must feel.  The original lawsuit indicated that the school district should have seen foreseeable harm.

What’s next?  Do we sue because a teacher is a bad shot and should have been able to hit her target?

The fallout of such a tragedy should be a discussion about realistic ways to stop this from ever happening again.  If having a police officer on site is an option, that could make sense.  After all, there are hundreds of citizens inside any school building during school hours.  I like the tack that the Ontario Government is taking with locked door policies.

Let’s not aim for a solution with the potential of making things worse.



  1. As a teacher who’s been teaching in a locked-door school for a year and a half now, I would agree that it’s an effective step, as are effective lockdown procedures. It would certainly have helped in the violent incident I was involved in several years ago. One of the biggest challenges is convincing students not to be polite, and open the door for people who are waiting to buzz in.

    Quick proof reading note: it’s a “tack” the gov’t is taking (as in sailing), rather than a tact.


  2. Thank you for the correction – the change has been made. That wasn’t a typo – I thought that I was using the right one. Learning something everyday.


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