As an educator who spent many years in the “traditional classroom,” I couldn’t be more pleased to share — and support — National Train a Teacher Day (NTATD). This third annual event, officially sponsored by the USCCA, TASER and Sabre Red, is a nationwide effort scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 1, 2020. The event invites teachers, administrators and school staff to learn about safety, situational awareness, first aid, firearms fundamentals and more from hundreds of volunteer instructors. And it’s all for free!
National Train a Teacher Day Background
“National Train a Teacher Day is a grassroots movement,” explained Klint Macro, certified instructor and National Train a Teacher Day co-administrator. “Instructors from all across the nation are offering free training to teachers, school staff, administrators and youth leaders [with the goal of] educating and empowering those who are charged with the safety and education of our children.”
It’s a fantastic program that arms school staff members with all-important knowledge … but not necessarily with firearms. Macro went on to clarify that NTATD is not advocating for a government-sanctioned Arm a Teacher Program. “However,” he stated, “we believe that law-abiding adult Americans — [including] teachers, school staff, administrators and youth leaders — should have every right and opportunity to arm themselves to protect those they love at work, just as they do at home, at the park, on the playground or at the mall.”
Dawn Dolpp, regional trainer with The Well Armed Woman (TWAW) Shooting Chapters and certified instructor in Virginia, has participated in the event for the last two years. She stated, “I have thoroughly loved participating in NTATD since its inception, and each year I’m still shocked at how ill-prepared our schools are for a violent encounter. We have to do better. The key to that is educating our educators!”
Challenges With Training Teachers
Of course, 2020 has definitely presented some new and unusual obstacles for the annual event. “We decided to reschedule the 3rd Annual National Train a Teacher Day from its original date in June to Aug. 1, 2020,” Klint explained. “[And while] the instructors from various states across the country definitely have unique challenges in negotiating the COVID crisis … we all are working to make this year’s NTATD the best yet. Whether it’s awareness training, firearms safety, defensive training, pepper spray, Taser, unarmed defense, first-aid training or tactical training, volunteer instructors are offing something for everyone on August 1, and it is 100% free!”
Beyond navigating possible county- and state-specific regulations on groups and gatherings, Kelly Pidgeon, certified firearms instructor and creator of Armed & Feminine, mentioned another interesting challenge that has come up in the last two years that she’s participated in NTATD. “Unfortunately, the teachers get soured after this training. They love shooting so much, they get upset that they’re not allowed to carry in schools,” she commented. “For me, this just proves that when teachers are responsibly trained to be armed, they understand how it can be useful and not problematic in the schools.”
Train a Teacher Details
As stated on the National Train a Teacher Day website, the ultimate goal of this nationwide event is to protect kids at school by educating and empowering those who watch over them and teach them. For more details, including opportunities to help with or participate in NTADT classes in your area, be sure to check out the NTATD website: www.NationalTrainATeacherDay.com.
About Beth Alcazar
Beth Alcazar, author of Women’s Handgun & Self-Defense Fundamentals and associate editor of Concealed Carry Magazine, has enjoyed nearly two decades of working and teaching in the firearms industry. Beth is passionate about safe and responsible firearms use and enthusiastic about teaching others. She is certified as an instructor through SIG Sauer Academy, ALICE Institute, DRAW School, TWAW and I.C.E. Training and is a USCCA Certified Instructor and Senior Training Counselor.