Teacher stood firm, dis­armed pupil

Sun Sentinel Broward Edition - - Opinion -

As a for­mer phys­i­cal ed­u­ca­tion teacher (re­tired in 2000), I have been fol­low­ing the de­bates con­cern­ing the shoot­ing tragedies in schools.

In my 33 years years of teach­ing in the el­e­men­tary level K-5, only once had ei­ther of my schools in both Fort Laud­erdale and in Hol­ly­wood, ex­pe­ri­enced po­ten­tial dan­ger.

An in­cor­ri­gi­ble teenage boy from a mid­dle school had the au­dac­ity to en­ter the out­side hall­ways of our cam­pus openly car­ry­ing a weapon. I felt com­pelled to con­front him.

Luck­ily, two note­wor­thy things of in­ter­est hap­pened:

• The stu­dent was car­ry­ing a BB gun (not an au­to­matic) and he was un­will­ing to give it up.

• Luck­ily, in the tus­sle that en­sued, I was slightly stronger than he.

Sub­se­quently, after much wrestling, the gun was given back to the prin­ci­pal. The young man was told that if he wanted it back, he would have to bring a par­ent along with him after hours.

My strong opin­ion is that there should never be a weapon or gun in a class­room set­ting for fear that a teacher, male or fe­male, could be over­pow­ered. This could elim­i­nate a po­ten­tial blood bath.

Teach­ers should be al­lowed to teach their pro­fes­sion and not have to be con­cerned about weaponry in the class­room.

When a par­tic­u­lar “code” is blared over the in­ter­com, they should be well-re­hearsed about the plethora of safety mea­sures that should have al­ready been im­ple­mented.

Tom Keith, Hol­ly­wood

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