If a Gun Walks Onto Campus

Before the beginning of a school year, a mandatory meeting is held that covers the idea of what to do if a gun walks onto campus. Everyone from cafeteria workers to the janitor attends. Not halfway through the meeting, many are in tears. It’s inconceivable that a teacher might end up taking a life to protect themselves and their students.

The burden on school staff to maintain “a safe and secure environment” for students is heavy and unsung.

I imagine that people train to become teachers because they have the gift of teaching. Of leading young minds to new places and rejoicing with them over the growth of a school year. They certainly don’t become teachers to get rich or because they like job security.

What other profession receives a yearly “pink slip” along with the assurance that “very likely” they will be rehired in two months? But no promises. What other profession balances Common Core, administration, gangs, parents, class sizes increases, grades, students, budgets, politics, sex, standardized testing, religion, cell phones, puberty, attitudes, drugs, feelings, sports, and glitter glue? You know, sometimes in a single day.

It’s something no one wants to consider and unfortunately, many communities have already experienced. I don’t believe anyone decides to go into the teaching profession thinking they will also act as a body guard. Or worse. Because what if the gunman is also one of the students you teach?

Where are the days we only worried about earthquakes, pop quizzes, and whether our outfits were cool?

Today’s message is short and to the point: hug your kids. Thank your teachers.

Read this first. Can you even?

What schools are working with: training.

Should teachers be armed? The debate.

What kids may be thinking about it: view.

Resources that teachers use: words for processing it.

Are the schools ready? Is yours?

Psalm 141:10 Let the wicked fall into their own nets, while I pass by in safety.

The Forgetful Files is a safe, supportive space exploring different life challenges and big questions with courage, kindness, humor, and practicality. Please join the conversation by offering your unique perspective!

Comment (4)

  • Brittany Hefner| March 18, 2019

    My husband and I are both high school teachers. We’ve talked about what we might do in active shooter situations. We get spooked by loud noises in the hallways or courtyard. And we’ve watched nearly grown students get a look of fear not knowing if the lockdown is a drill or the real thing. I won’t leave teaching because these kids need us BECAUSE of all the crazy things we deal with everyday. But please, do thank your teachers…and pray for us, because we need it!!

    • Jolie Tunnell| March 19, 2019

      Thank you for being there when parents aren’t and juggling everything, including the glitter glue. Praying for you and this beautiful, crazy planet.

  • Pat| March 17, 2019

    What a message to anyone who is thinking of becoming a teacher. God have mercy on us all.

    • Jolie Tunnell| March 17, 2019

      Teachers are going to teach, it’s their heartsong. I just think we should thank them more often, there are so many things they have to do besides teach.

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