Let’s Talk About Armed School Security Guards
The national conversation on student safety has begun. The recent rash of school shooting, alongside other mass killings performed by youth has ignited heated arguments in homes, congress, and on social media regarding how best to protect our youth. Outrageous and impractical answers have been bandied about, from banning all firearms to arming every teacher across America. One of the more reasonable suggestions has been placing armed school security guards in every school. Would this help? Do the pros outweigh the cons? Let’s find out.
The Pros of Armed School Security Guards
All things being equal, and assuming the security professional is well trained, courteous, and effective, there are some very real benefits to the presence of armed security professionals. First, the presence of a uniformed figure of authority can cut down on misbehavior. Secondly, and most importantly, an armed school security guard can respond to violent assailants, and help to prevent tragedies before they ever happen. There are, after all, recorded instances of school security guards giving their life to protect students. That doesn’t even bring into consideration the deterrent effect. Students who might be inclined to commit large scale crimes may simply not do so, thanks to the risk that their master plan fall apart.
The Cons of Armed School Security Guards
There are downsides, and these should be considered and discussed. There is no good data on the impact that security guards have on stopping violent crime. That’s not to say they don’t have an effect, simply, that there aren’t enough violent incidents per year to draw any meaningful conclusions from the data. Beyond that, studies have shown that students feel less safe when there are armed security professionals present, which can negatively impact academic performance. Finally, while we can’t be certain of the impact of school security guards, we can say that they aren’t 100 percent effective. There was an armed security guard at Columbine, after all, and he failed to stop the massacre that occurred there.
Overall, the decision of a school district to invest in armed security depends upon the level of risk they feel their students are exposed to, their budgetary concerns, and the desires of the parents. If you’re interested in reviewing the security options for your school, or just for an event, the call APS at 1-866-770-0004 or find us online at online order form.