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Dear Editor:

What are sensible solutions to school campus gun violence? Many of us are asking this essential question.

As an educator for more than 45 years, I am shocked and disheartened to see the suggested solution of arming teachers and school personnel.

Educators surveyed recently by the National Education Association (, March 13, 2018) overwhelmingly rejected proposals to arm teachers and other school personnel. Instead, teachers support common-sense solutions to address the issues of school shootings in the U.S. See the poll results for various specific solutions around universal background checks, banning assault weapons, raising age of gun ownership to 21 and limiting access to those with a history of mental illness and domestic violence.

I’ve talked with former students and student teachers, parents, current teachers and colleagues across the U.S. from South Carolina to California to D.C. to Minnesota to Arizona and here in Colorado. None believed arming teachers to be a prudent solution.

I invite you to talk with the teachers here in Salida, members of the Salida Education Association, community leaders and members, students and parents … to see what they think.

I was pleased with the media coverage across the U.S. for the March for Our Lives. My thanks to the organizers of the Salida march and the Salida students’ walkout. I applaud all of the organizers, supporters, participants and change agents: most especially, the students.

The signs and chants that resonated with me then and linger on in my mind from the Lake Havasu City, Ariz., march that I participated in: We Want Change; Arms are for Hugs; Enough – Teachers Need Books, Not Guns; Protect our Kids; Teach in Peace; and Never Again.

Write your legislators. Vote!

Linda Erickson,