Wisconsin Reps. weigh in on armed teacher bill

By Neena Pacholke, WAOW

CENTRAL WISCONSIN (WAOW) - A Wisconsin lawmaker wants to arm private and tribal school teachers with guns. 

State Representative Jesse Kremer introduced the bill in wake of the Parkland, Fla. shooting that left 17 dead. 

"I would like to see the Congress of the United States act like grown ups and protect these children," Senator Tammy Baldwin said. 

Attorney General Brad Schimel said he is open to allowing teachers and staff to be armed in schools.

State Representative Katrina Shankland talked to teachers who are not in favor of the bill. 

"If this bill were to pass I did hear from teachers who said they would quit," Shankland said. "To ask them to do one more thing on top of being highly trained professionals in their fields is a serious expectation that can not possibly be met under the circumstances given that a gunman was able to kill 17 people in three minutes recently."

Teachers would have to obtain a concealed carry permit.

State Representative Patrick Snyder released a statement saying, "“School districts should make their own decisions. That’s why I supported legislation [Monday] to fund retired law enforcement officer positions in schools. I’m open to discussing other options that school officials think are necessary in order to keep our kids safe.”

Regardless of political party, Shankland said the issue can't go unnoticed. 

"It's very important that we look at what we can do to enhance the safety of our public school children, our kids in every school as well as the teachers who have basically become human shields at this point," she said. "They need to be bipartisan conversations that bring meaningful solutions forward, not solutions that will only cause more problems down the road." 

Baldwin would not vote on this state bill but said the federal government needs to acknowledge this issue. 

"Sadly as we've seen too many times, attention switched to a new issue and we didn't see legislative action, I'd still like to see legislative action," Baldwin said. 

Due to the timing of this bill it likely won't reach a vote. Lawmakers say assembly session is almost complete, therefore it won't be seen until the next session.