Outlaw guns in our schools

The Medford teacher who wants to carry a concealed gun at school stated that she feared for her and her daughter's safety, according to a newspaper report (Medford Mail Tribune, Armed teacher reveals identity, Oct. 3).

What kind of care and support are we showing her, other staff members &

and above all, the students &

when a teacher is allowed to continue working under such duress? Where is the accountability of that teacher, administration and union?

When a person is having domestic problems, addiction problems or other obstacles that affect their peace of mind they will not be as effective as they should be on the job. Being mindful while being with children is imperative, we need to be at our best. Part of a teacher's responsibility is to be a positive role model for our children.

School staff is made up of human beings, and as human beings they will have issues and problems that may affect their performance around our children. It is up to the staff to build and foster the trust needed to show true care and support for each other by defining their most important priorities to keep a safe and authentic place of learning. Staff must accept responsibility for their positive and negative actions and the ripple effects they create.

Proactively the schools and unions should be working together to effectively evaluate all employees/contractors with an ongoing process. Evaluations mostly reinforce the wonderful work they do, but also to discuss any challenges they may be having as an employee/contractor and recommend the tools available to them, requiring compliance, and follow-up. Keeping in mind "student welfare first," sometimes it will be necessary for staff to request or to be placed on a leave of absence to seek professional assistance until problems are resolved &

especially if their presence on campus can cause potential harm to themselves and others.

The means are the ends in the making.

Guns should not be allowed in any school: public or private. Legislation needs to be changed to ensure this. Please write to our legislators regarding the Oregon Revised Statute 166.170 on regulating firearms. Let your voices be heard at school meetings such as site councils, PTA/PTO and district board meetings. Write or email the state superintendent of schools, your district superintendent, and principals.

It does take a village to raise a child.

Sue Graham

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