Ranking Member Bobby Scott on Report of DeVos’s Proposal to Arm Teachers
“Redirecting … money to arm teachers and school staff will recklessly endanger the safety of both students and educators, while robbing underserved students of the support and opportunity they deserve.”
WASHINGTON – Ranking Member Bobby Scott (VA-03) issued the following statement after a report from the New York Times that the Department of Education is considering a proposal that would allow money that was intended to be used for mental health services and bullying prevention to be used to purchase guns.
“The Trump administration has a duty to carry out the laws as Congress intended. As one of the primary authors of Every Student Succeeds Act, I am certain that Congress never intended - or even imagined - the Education Department would use Title IV funds to buy guns for school teachers. However, even if there is confusion about Title IV’s flexibility regarding school safety, Congress made our position clear when we provided funds for school safety and violence prevention in the aftermath of the school shooting in Parkland, Florida and specifically prohibited school safety funds from being used to arm teachers.
“The taxpayer money provided to schools under Title IV of ESSA is meant to fund mental health treatment for students, anti-bullying programming, drug prevention in schools, and other important services that contribute to a healthy school culture. Redirecting that money to arm teachers and school staff will recklessly endanger the safety of both students and educators, while robbing underserved students of the support and opportunity they deserve.
“The administration is openly violating the spirit of the law as well as common sense about gun safety. If it is unwilling to abandon this proposal, Congress must step in to protect students and educators from the consequences.”
Democratic Press Office, 202-226-0853
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