Between President Trump’s suggestion to arm trained teachers and students around the country walking out of schools, educators have been challenged this month. It's changed the way universities have to educate future teachers.
“It's a very interesting climate and certainly very, very different than several decades ago when I was preparing to be a teacher,” UNLV’s College of Education Dean Kim Metcalf said.
Metcalf said the college had to evolve and change its curriculum to address the current climate.
“Since 1 October, here, we have very consciously come to realize that schools and teachers, even if the event didn't occur in a school, but if it's a community event, traumatic community event, schools and teachers and folks in those schools have a huge role to play in helping kids and families get through it,” Metcalf said.
He said while it would be ideal for a teacher to just focus on the academics, that's not an option anymore.
“We add more and more of the care-taking, security, whole child elements to their task,” Metcalf said.
President Trump toyed with the idea of trained teachers having a concealed carry gun in schools to deter shooters from targeting them.
However, Metcalf said adding that responsibility to an educator’s job wouldn’t be wise.
“I think the notion of expecting professional educators to take on the role of armed security, even if they are, as the president suggested, former military or whatever, is incredibly unfair to those folks,” Metcalf said.
He also said the nationwide school walk-outs are another issue educators must handle. He said as a former administrator, he sees how it can be disruptive, but it’s also encouraging to see that generation be so active in a civic way.
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