Sunday, May 5, 2019

Allow teachers to be armed

In the State of Florida a pending bill to allow teachers to be armed is on its way to the Governor. By now it may even have been signed.

This May 2, 2019 article on reports that both the Florida Senate and the Florida House passed it. Only Florida Governor Ron DeSantis needs to sign it.

In February 2018 I addressed the Richland 2 School Board on school safety and asked for a survey of parents, teachers, staff and community members on the issue of allowing teachers to be armed.

Notice the phrasing of my request. It was for a survey.

I think the temperature in the room dropped about 30ยบ. During the second public participation segment two parents spoke and said they did not want guns in the schools.

Had I asked for guns in the school?

No one from the District responded.

At the next meeting I suggested that the District apply for a grant from the NRA School Shield Program. Again no response from the District - until I emailed then then-Board Chair, Craig Plank, and about five minutes later Supt. Davis called to tell me the District would not apply for the grant. It was looking at other sources.

I wondered, "How did he get a consensus from the Board so quickly on a decision whether to apply for such a grant?" I hadn't heard any mention during the board meeting to delegate a decision on such an important item to the superintendent.

My guess was that the only reason the District would not apply for the School Shield Program grant was that it was offered by the NRA. May I suggest that you read just what the School Shield Program is?

I'll tell you what it is not. It is not a program designed to put guns in every school. The grants providing funding for schools to address "... the many facets of school security, including best practices in security infrastructure, technology, personnel, training, and policy."

Do you see "put a gun in every classroom" there? Nope.

Personally, I favor allowing teachers to be armed. Not for the purpose of being additional police in the school, but in the event of an active shooter situation.

If some scumbag is trying to break into a barricaded classroom to harm the students and all the student are hiding behind the teacher, why shouldn't a teacher have a chance to defend them and himself?

Is race a problem in discipline?

Is race a problem in discipline at the Richland 2 School District?

More than a year ago I met a man before last year's big More Justice (Midlands Organized Response for Equity and Justice) gathering. I hadn't started this blog yet, but I asked to be contacted with more information. No one called.

On March 26 a woman addressed the School Board about More Justice. I left a message for her at her church and also left a message on Facebook to be contacted. No one contacted me.

More Justice has a large public meeting planned for tomorrow, Monday, May 6, 2019, at 7:00PM at the Koger Center, 1051 Greene Street, Columbia. A speaker during the public participation segment of the April 30th school board meeting indicated that as many as 1,700 people might attend.

As I understand it, one of the concerns of More Justice members is related to what they consider unfair discipline dished out to black students, when compared to white students, in Richland 2 schools.

I myself don't know if it's fair or not.

If you want to know more about More Justice, which is an assembly of 29 churches, find them on Facebook and here.