Journal of Educational Leadership in Action


Joseph Cernik


The Newtown shooting opened up (again) the issue of guns on school grounds, both at the K-12 level and university level, and whether teachers and administrators should be armed. The Newtown shooting also focused attention again on the shootings at the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in Blacksburg. In that incident, 32 people were killed and 17 wounded on April 2007. The shooter, Seung-Hui Cho, a senior, ended his killing spree by committing suicide. Following Cho’s shooting spree, the National Rifle Association (NRA) created NRA-U, or National Rifle Association University, an organization that reaches out to college students interested in having guns on campus or learning about having guns on campus. In addition to NRA-U, an organization called Students for Concealed Carry was established to promote the cause of students, or more specifically students 21 and over, who want to have a concealed gun on campus. This organization has chapters on various campuses in a number of states. Since 2007, they have held Open Holster protests on campuses, which is as it sounds—students wearing open holsters to demonstrate their desire to carry guns on campus. The push to allow students 21 and over to have guns inevitably involves court cases. The point is that school administrators and teachers are not the only focus of who should be allowed to have guns on campus: There is a broad-based push to allow many to have concealed guns on campus, even people who are not students, administrators, or faculty members, as will be noted in a case from Virginia. This article looks at federal court cases (two United States Supreme Court cases and one Court of Appeals case) and briefly examines how they open ways to examine the issue of guns and schools.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-Share Alike 4.0 International License.