‘‘You are going to put teachers, people teaching 6-year-olds in a school, and expect them to respond to an active-shooter situation?’’ said Ladd Everitt, a spokesman for the Washington, D.C.-based Coalition to Stop Gun Violence, who called the idea of arming teachers ‘‘madness.’’
Kristin Rowe-Finkbeiner said she would not have felt better if teachers at her children’s Seattle school had been armed during a May shooting at a nearby cafe. A gunman killed four people at the cafe and another woman during a carjacking before killing himself. The school went on lockdown as a precaution.
‘‘It would be highly concerning to me to know that guns were around my kids each and every day. ... Increasing our arms is not the answer,’’ said Rowe-Finkbeiner, co-founder and CEO of MomsRising.org.
Dan Gross, president of the Brady Campaign, said focusing on arming teachers distracts from the ‘‘real things’’ that could help prevent a school shooting ‘‘and at worse it furthers a dangerous conversation that only talks about guns as protection without a discussion about the serious risks they present.’’
As the debate continues, Harrold’s school plans to leave its policy unchanged.
‘‘Nothing is 100 percent at all. ... But hope makes for a terrible plan, hoping that (a tragedy) won’t happen,’’ Thweatt said. ‘‘My question is: What have you done about it? How have you planned?’’
Associated Press writers Juan A. Lozano in Houston and Nomaan Merchant in Dallas contributed to this report.