No school insurance for teachers with guns
Allowing teachers and other employees to carry guns under a new state law would cost most school districts their insurance.
EMC Insurance Companies, the state’s main insurer of schools, won’t insure districts with armed employees under the new law, which takes effect July 1. Districts already insured by EMC wouldn’t have their policies renewed.
“We understand that school districts have every right to decide which way they want to go,” Bernie Zalaznik, EMC’s resident vice president in Wichita, said Monday. “But we have to make the decision based on what we perceive to be our best financial interest.”
EMC, which Zalaznik estimated insures about 90 percent of Kansas’ 286 school districts, has issued a letter to its agents around the state, explaining that concealed carry would pose too great a risk.
“We are making this underwriting decision simply to protect the financial security of our company,” said the May 15 letter, which can be viewed in full on The Topeka Capital-Journal’s website.
Zalaznik and the Kansas Association of School Boards said some school districts have been showing interest in letting employees carry firearms. Currently, only law enforcement officers can carry guns on school property.
Zalaznik said he had heard directly from or indirectly of about five or six districts seeking information on allowing guns in schools. David Shriver, director of the school board association’s insurance program, said about a dozen districts around the state, mostly small ones, had called and expressed interest.
The school board association is advising all districts against taking advantage of the new law.