Education News

With Concealed Weapons Coming To Campus, Houston Professors Advised To Avoid “Sensitive Topics”

UH Faculty Senate President Jonathan Snow recently told the Board of Regents that campus carry is the number one issue among his colleagues.

The University of Houston is expected to release its plan for the new campus carry law this month.

The law will allow students and professors with concealed handgun licenses to bring weapons to public college campuses.

Meanwhile, faculty members are preparing to handle the new world of higher education. At a recent campus carry forum for professors, they were given several suggestions.

Among them:

  • Be careful discussing sensitive topics.
  • Consider dropping certain topics from their curriculum.
  • Don’t “go there” if they sense anger in the classroom.

Campus carry is the number one issue among UH professors, as Houston Faculty Senate President Jonathan Snow told the Board of Regents at their February meeting.

He said that the issue isn’t political or a fear of guns, but how teaching and learning will be impacted.

“Academics know that the intrusion of gun culture into campus inevitably harms the academic enterprise in a myriad of ways,” Snow said.

“Thomas Jefferson and James Madison — the principal authors of the Second Amendment — as members of the University of Virginia Board of Regents, kept guns off their campus and we’re asking you to help do the same,” he said.

In December, the faculty senate reached a resolution in opposition to campus carry, or Senate Bill 11, which was signed into law by Gov. Greg Abbott.

The campus carry law goes into effect this August for public four-year institutions. It will impact community colleges next year.

Private universities can opt out of the law, and many have decided to do that, including Rice and the University of St. Thomas.

Public institutions have to allow licensed concealed weapons, though they may create some gun-free zones.

The campus carry law is separate from another Texas law called open carry, which does not affect college campuses.

Here is a copy of the full campus carry presentation for UH professors.

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Laura Isensee

Laura Isensee

Education Reporter

Laura Isensee covers education for Houston Public Media, including K-12 and higher education. Previously, she was a staff reporter at The Miami Herald and contributed to South Florida’s NPR affiliate. Her work has also appeared in The Dallas Morning News, Reuters and Clarín in Argentina. Laura has won awards for...

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