© 2021 Maine Public
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
Education resources provided by the Maine Public:PBS LearningMediaSTEM Resource Bank

Sen. King Signs Letter Opposing The Use Of Federal Money For Firearms Training For Teachers

Carolyn Kaster
AP Photo

U.S. Sen. Angus King has joined more than 40 Democratic senators to oppose a reported plan by the U.S. Department of Education to use some federal funds to pay for guns and firearms training in schools.

Last week, the New York Times reported that Education Secretary Betsy DeVos is considering allowing school districts to spend some of the approximately $1 billion they receive from certain federal grants on guns and gun training for teachers and staff. The Trump administration disputed the story, but Democratic lawmakers quickly came out against the reported proposal.

Thursday Sen. King and 44 other senators signed a letter to DeVos asking her to reject the idea. In the letter, the lawmakers argue that federal grants are intended to help "provide a well-rounded education," and were never meant to be spent on guns. They also argue that the proposal could lead to more violence, not less.

In a recent Gallup poll, nearly 75 percent of teachers said they would not want to carry a gun in school.

This post was updated to show that the Gallup poll found nearly 75 percent of teachers would not want to carry a gun in school; a previous version said 80 percent.