Tennessee Education Group Supports Arming Teachers

Feb 5, 2013

The largest teachers union in Tennessee is on board with allowing educators to carry a weapon to class, at least as a last resort. The Tennessee Education Association is supporting a bill under consideration by the state legislature.

But TEA President Gera Summerford says they'd prefer teachers not need to bring a gun to school at all.

"I think the way we would look at it is it's the responsibility of law enforcement trained personnel," she said.

But the TEA also wants a school resource officer in every school. So the organization has signed onto a bill from state Senator Frank Niceley that would mandate it. if there's no money for a uniformed officer, the legislation allows an administrator or faculty member to be trained. As long as no teacher is forced to carry a weapon, the teachers union says they're in support.

Republican Governor Bill Haslam has expressed some misgivings, though, saying he doesn't know many teachers who would want to carry a gun.