- The presidents of the American Federation of Teachers and the National Education Association have released a joint statement opposing proposals made by Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, U.S. Rep. Louie Gohmert and WIlliam Bennett aimed at arming teachers in the wake of the Sandy Hook Elementary tragedy.
- NEA President Dennis Van Roekel and AFT President Randi Weingarten say that officials must do everything that can be done to reduce the possibility of gunfire in schools, and that arming educators and turning them into "objects of fear" would only increase the danger in schools.
- The statement goes on to say that the response to the tragedy is not just about guns, but about preventing bullying and expanding mental health services in schools, noting a National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors statistic that states have cut at least $4.35 billion in funding for public mental health between 2009 and 2012.
From the article:
WASHINGTON—NEA President Dennis Van Roekel and AFT President Randi Weingarten react to proposals by Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, U.S. Rep. Louie Gohmert, and William Bennett to arm teachers as a way to prevent school violence.“Our duty to every child is to provide safe and secure public schools. That is the vow we take as educators. It is both astounding and disturbing that following this tragedy, Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, U.S. Rep. Louie Gohmert, Bill Bennett, and other politicians and pundits have taken to the airwaves to call for arming our teachers." ...