Texas school district let's teachers and staff carry guns at school

The full article is available here:

Texas school district OKs pistols for staff
August 15, 2008

HARROLD, Texas — A tiny Texas school district may be the first in the nation to allow teachers and staff to pack guns for protection when classes begin later this month, a newspaper reported.

Trustees at the Harrold Independent School District approved a district policy change last October so employees can carry concealed firearms to deter and protect against school shootings, provided the gun-toting teachers follow certain requirements.

In order for teachers and staff to carry a pistol, they must have a Texas license to carry a concealed handgun; must be authorized to carry by the district; must receive training in crisis management and hostile situations and have to use ammunition that is designed to minimize the risk of ricochet in school halls.

Superintendent David Thweatt said the small community is a 30-minute drive from the sheriff's office, leaving students and teachers without protection. He said the district's lone campus sits 500 feet from heavily trafficked U.S. 287, which could make it a target.

"When the federal government started making schools gun-free zones, that's when all of these shootings started. Why would you put it out there that a group of people can't defend themselves? That's like saying 'sic 'em' to a dog," Thweatt said in Friday's online edition of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

Thweatt said officials researched the policy and considered other options for about a year before approving the policy change. He said the district also has various other security measures in place to prevent a school shooting.

"The naysayers think (a shooting) won't happen here. If something were to happen here, I'd much rather be calling a parent to tell them that their child is OK because we were able to protect them," Thweatt said. . . .

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

I saw this earlier today, and one thing stands out: if they're going to include a rule about ammunition to minimize ricochet, why not include a rule that the firearm must be carried on the person, not in a purse/fannypack/etc?

If there's any restriction that would make sense for carrying in a school, I'd have to say 'no off person carry' makes more sense that ammo regs.

Other than that, congrats to a school district for finally doing something right.

8/15/2008 9:39 PM  
Blogger Phillip said...

I've been leaving this suggestion at other sites: I would suggest that people actually e-mail Mr. Thweatt to show support and thank him for his courage and dedication to the welfare of his students.

8/15/2008 11:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The news about the school has traveled all the way to the so-called newspapers here in Italy, that as usual when it comes to firearms can't help putting gun owners and guns in a bad light. None of the newspapers has thought about mentioning that the teachers that will want to carry a gun must have a carry permit. The way they gave the news (one of them showed a picture of Chuck Norris as Walker Texas Ranger (no kidding), another talked about "gunslingers professors") would lead to think that every teacher will just go buy a gun and take it into class.
No wonder about this however, since despite our Olympic medals in clay shooting, no newspaper has thought about mentioning what kind of shotguns our and not only ours athletes used....

8/16/2008 3:09 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I took Phillip's advice and sent an email to the Super. Here is his reply.


Thank you for your supportive email. I have and will be sharing your thoughts with my staff and board of trustees. Your email was one of the many positive emails I have received—I’ve only received about three negatives out of about fifty. Please encourage others to stand up for the American values that have made the country great—taking responsibility for ourselves and protecting the lives of our innocents who are not able to defend themselves.

God Bless America, and God bless you for your thoughtfulness,

David Thweatt


Harrold ISD--Texas

Please, everyone, let's bury those few negative replies in an avalanche of supporting emails.

8/18/2008 10:48 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think that the new laws in Texas are crazy. It would be so easy for a student to get ahold of the firearms and shoot another student.

8/20/2008 12:03 PM  
Blogger John Lott said...

Dear last anonymous:

Thanks for your comment, but there is no evidence for your concern. Prior to 1995 the right-to-carry states had no restrictions on people carrying guns on school campuses, but I can't find any evidence of a single problem that occurred with a permitted concealed handgun. Some states currently allow permitted guns on school property, but there are no problems that have occurred. What evidence do you have that problems will occur?

8/20/2008 5:49 PM  

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