House Speaker Beth Harwell said she’s unsure what effect last week’s massacre in Connecticut will have on gun laws next year but said she’s opposed to the idea of letting teachers carry guns into the classroom.
“I think it would be asking way too much of our teachers for them to be armed in a classroom, and I’m not in favor of going down that route,” she told reporters on Capitol Hill Wednesday.
“I really think you really have to be highly qualified to handle a gun in a high-stress situation, which is in fact what that was,” she said.
Lawmakers have begun floating several ideas to react to last week’s school shooting which left 26 people dead, many of them children. Ideas so far have ranged from allowing certain faculty and staff to have a gun on campus and require all schools have an armed staff member of some kind.
Harwell said some of those decisions might be best decided by local city and school officials.
She said she’s unsure how the events of last week will affect expected legislation that would allow gun owners to keep their firearms locked in their vehicles parked on work property, which could include college campuses.
“It makes me realize how careful we must be — that we’re impacting a lot of people,” she said of the legislation.
The Tennessee Department of Education has planned a School Safety Summit next month to discuss concerns following the shooting.