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Amendment gives parents a choice in arming teachers

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OKLAHOMA CITY—An Oklahoma legislator has amended a controversial bill that would give parents the final say if guns are allowed in their child’s classroom.

House Bill 1062 allows an elementary or secondary school teacher or administrator to carry a handgun into class if the school district allows it.

The teacher must have a certain amount of training, which would be paid for by the school board of education over summer break.

However, an amendment would allow parents who object to the law to send their children to private schools.

“If the House passes this bill, they should at least let parents who object to gun-toting teachers and principals opt out,” said Rep. Mike Shelton. “I would not support vouchers otherwise, but if parents feel their children are unsafe and arming teachers does not secure our kids, than schools should provide vouchers so kids can go elsewhere. There are other ways to address the issue of school security than effectively militarizing our schools.”

Shelton also offered an amendment that would make schools provide cell phones in each grade, in case of emergencies.