North Carolina teachers do not want their colleagues — not even trained ones — to carry guns in school, according to a new Elon University Poll.
The poll was conducted in response to a national discussion about school safety in which President Donald Trump supports arming teachers. Such a policy would directly impact teachers, according to Elon Poll Director and Assistant Political Science Professor Jason Husser. His team gathered survey responses from 379 teachers, all of whom were registered North Carolina voters.
"In every subgroup we looked at — regardless of party, regardless of age, regardless of region of state, whether it was an urban or rural school — we found a majority of teachers opposed to the notion of carrying guns to school," said Husser. "We did see some partisan differences. However, even a majority of Republicans the group most likely to say, 'Good idea,' still said it was a bad idea."
Among teachers who identified as Republican, 57 percent said arming teachers was a bad idea and 36 percent said it was a good idea. More predictably, 95 percent of Democrats opposed giving teachers guns and 5 percent supported it.
The majority of teacher polled agreed guns would make schools less safe, and student learning would suffer.
"The voices of teachers matter on this,"Husser said. "They're the folks who are going to have to be dealing with it and they, in many ways, have more general knowledge than the public about what's going to be going on in schools, since they work there every day."