“The problem isn’t our schools, the problem is our streets,” McLaughlin said. “What’s on our streets? On the streets of Lawrence, there’s poverty, drug abuse, addiction, mental health issues. That’s where we need to put our resources. I’ll tell you this: we need stricter gun control laws in our country.”
Robin Toner, president of the Massachusetts Teachers Association, echoed the sentiment.
“The NRA’s proposal to bring armed guards into every school in our nation is impulsive and wrongheaded,” Toner said. “We must seek sensible approaches to school safety and to ensuring that dangerous weapons such as assault rifles are strictly regulated so that there will never be another tragedy like the one that occurred in Newtown one week ago. The MTA believes that guns have no place in our schools.”
In Andover, School Committee chairwoman Paula Colby-Clements would not comment on the NRA proposal, but said each community should be allowed to craft its own solutions to gun violence rather than have a single solution imposed on thousands of schools nationwide.
“What I worry about is that sometimes, when we get nervous, we craft one-size-fits-all policies for every community,” Colby-Clements said. “That’s not always the case. The paramount concern is safety and communities are now grappling with how to adapt policies they already have, to make schools even safer.”