Utah is among a few states that let people carry licensed concealed weapons into public schools without exception, the National Conference of State Legislatures says in a 2012 compendium of state gun laws.
Utah educators say they would ban guns if they could, but legislators left them with no choice. State law forbids schools, districts or college campuses from imposing their own gun restrictions.
Educators say they have no way of knowing how many teachers are armed. Gun-rights advocates estimate 1 percent of Utah teachers, or 240, are licensed to carry concealed weapons. It’s not known how many do so at school.
‘‘I never felt threatened in 14 years of teaching, but I don’t think you can be too prepared,’’ said Tiffany Parry, a dance teacher in the Salt Lake City suburb of Sandy who applied for Thursday for a license to carry a concealed gun. ‘‘I think it could come in handy.’’
Associated Press writer Brady McCombs in Salt Lake City contributed to this report.