Educators on Arming Teachers

John Reid
Friday, February 23rd

Transcript - Not for consumer use. Robot overlords only. Will not be accurate.

635. Here on this Friday morning it's the 23. Day of February 2018. A this is Richmond's morning news I'm John Reid very glad to have you with us. As you heard in Andy's newscast. A lot of talk about farming. Some teachers to follow through on the point that the president was make he's not trying to put our holster on everybody's hip in every classroom but. I get some teachers. Trained and armed. To intimidate. The crazy people who might. C schools as an easy target make it less of an easy target at least that's the proposal I think if I understand it correct to present his pushing out there. What Jim Livingston is the president of the Virginia education association and he joins us on the phone. Today to give us his candid reaction to the discussion of the last 48 hours champ. Thanks so much for the for joining us what is what is your initial take on what the president proposed. Morning John thank you for having no absolutely program this morning. Who. The Virginia education association is committed to a great public schools for every child to come welcome trillion quite on a slave the discussion around. Army teacher who is very alarming. We don't believe they're introducing more guns into the school settings is going to be a real solution to the problem that you basically have to on this that the reality is you know. School systems in Virginia as well as across the country. As saying it's resource cuts for the past two deck and we have seen the numbers to two truce decrease when you see the number of guidance counselors they're down to the scene the number psychologist who count. After available for our students a number of mental health workers that are available to our students. Don't look where we are. I think what we're seeing because. Is a direct result of bad. I'm Dan and I are positioned two lead to be your trust to the group owns and all of this type of behavior and we we don't believe that putting more guns and a crap from. And an end and that since making our our school hall ways and the potential wild west shoot out scenario. That's not a solution for the problem. Well I can understand that that would be of concern that. Escalating. They could be if you give be perceived as escalating the potential for violent conflict rather than. The emotional. Problems that sometimes lead to conflict so. Would you guys hear you saying the resource though the financial resources have been cut over the last couple of decades. Is that the solution in your mind is to try to. In have more counselors more staff actually in need school to identify. Troubled students and work with them on the front end to try to keep them from slipping through the cracks. We certainly believe that that's part that's part of the solution John you know it's a public education has instead it has been under a great deal of criticism. Over over many years. And and part of that I think stems from a too many people especially policymakers attempt and elected officials. Believe that the big there's a magic. War on out there that we can Wear a green or what single solution to the problem it's going to fix. Positions. That we face. And our public schools but the reality is that matchup one doesn't it's just it's going to take. But comprehensive. Effort on behalf of not only are school but he elected officials community leaders business leaders and so forth. To address. Not only does that the violence this year. That we just seeing a blatant schools split between trust the other issues that are public school stayed at. I wonder if you're and so it's not it's not a simple fact. I wonder whether this cell hardening. The school's idea is. A compromise in some ways I'm in Europe you were members probably don't like the idea of going to work and armed camps. You know that because the perception is that once shoot you have metal detectors at the door and every Doris change are locked there's a monitoring every door I mean it just changes the atmosphere of the campus. But it is is that kind of halfway point. To try to stop in the short term anyone who may have been inspired and a negative way from what what happened recently and over the last couple years. I I agree with you our members are not interested in you don't want to two. The fortress. To teach. And then then and I think that's the risk that we brought me is this making arm our schools armed camps for armed fortresses. And they need to be centers of learning remains to be safe so a lot of learning. I think there are a variety of things that we could look at you know I'd been in a number of schools who have. Actually redesigned the access points so to building. To make that much more safe and that and that and they've been done and they are very. I'm very sensitive way. So as to provide a greater level strength gave wallet the same time. Not compromise in the welcoming atmosphere within our schools seem to have. You know other schools need to be safe places we all agree on that. But I think that the issue is how to we get there. Without making them armed fortress Cisco and have to get back to the states kick. Fundamental. Requirement. That says that the should be taking place in our school so it should be places. Of who mourn him and I and I think you've been this issue as. During that this is most definitely you we have to keep sight of the fact. There are schools need to be warm that they need to be welcoming they need to be places where students not only feel send but the students compliant. And Kemp worm. Well I know we would all agree on mass it's just a really unfortunate situation that randomly across the country we. We have our desires run up against a really ugly reality and and somehow we got to work through but I appreciate. Those those thoughts and the the insight that you offer on behalf of teachers all across the commonwealth Jim Livingston the president of the Virginia education and education association. Thanks so much for joining us some Richmond's morning news appreciate if you're on preparing you to.