Education, Finance, Labor News Briefs, Law and Politics, National

AFT Rips Betsy DeVos’ ‘Insane’ Guns-for-Teachers Plan

August 24, 2018

By Steve Wishnia and Neal Tepel

WASHINGTON—A possible Education Department plan to use federal funds to buy teachers guns is “insane,” American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten said in a statement Aug. 23. The plan, reported by the New York Times Aug. 22, would enable states to use money from federal Student Support and Academic Enrichment grants to purchase weapons and give educators firearms training. Because the grant program is not covered by a congressional ban on the use of federal school-safety funds for firearms, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos could approve those purchases at her discretion. “Does Betsy DeVos want a kindergarten teacher interacting with her students with a holstered gun on her hip?” Weingarten asked. “Instead of after-school programs or counselors, programs that are critical for creating safe and welcoming schools and addressing the mental-health needs of kids, DeVos wants to turn the U.S. government into an arms dealer for schools. That’s insane.” The $1 billion program’s official goals are providing a well-rounded education, improving school conditions for learning, and improving the use of technology for digital literacy, but the Times reported the Education Department would justify the guns as improving school conditions, by arming teachers in case of a school shooting. Read more

August 24, 2018

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