This study uses data from high school students across multiple school districts in a Midwestern county to examine how race and perceptions of fairness intersect to influence attitudes on arming teachers.
Although school violence statistics indicate that schools are safe places, anxiety over school shootings continues to influence school safety reform to the extent that security measures in American public schools include the arming of schoolteachers. Furthermore, not only have youths’ perceptions of school security been relatively unexplored, existing research points to racial inequalities in the use of and the effects of school security practices. The results of the current study suggest that, relative to White students, Black students are less supportive of arming teachers and anticipate greater decreases in safety if teachers are armed. In addition, perceptions of fairness mediate the effect of race on support and feelings of safety. Implications for policy and future research are discussed. (Publisher Abstract Provided)