Half of Americans oppose arming teachers: poll

Half of Americans are opposed to arming teachers in classrooms, according to a new poll taken in the week after thousands of students nationwide marched to protest gun violence.

The YouGov poll found that 50 percent of respondents either strongly opposed or somewhat opposed the idea of allowing teachers and administrators to carry firearms on school property. The proposal has been pushed by some Republicans in the weeks following the massacre of 17 people at a high school in Parkland, Fla.

Thirty-six percent supported the idea of arming teachers, according to the poll.

Those who identified as Republicans showed broad support (69 percent) for such measures, with only 24 percent opposed.

President Trump called repeatedly for arming school staff so they could respond in active shooter events after the Florida tragedy. In the wake of the shooting, the state’s Republican-controlled legislature passed a bill allocating money toward a weapons training program for teachers.

Democrats have led the charge in calling for gun restrictions in the wake of the shooting, with many progressive members of Congress voicing their support for the student-led “March for our Lives” demonstration in Washington last weekend that called for legislative action to prevent gun violence.

Opinions on the matter were also influenced by geographic factors, with waning support in schools nearer to urban areas, YouGov reported.

Meanwhile, 65 percent of African-Americans said they were opposed to the idea. Only 21 percent supported it.

The YouGov poll surveyed 1,500 respondents from March 25 to 27, and carried a margin of error of plus or minus 3.4 percent. Of the 1,330 registered voters surveyed, the error was 2.8 percent.