ST. HELENS, Ore. (CBS Seattle) — An Oregon school district is allowing its teachers and staff members to carry concealed guns.

The St. Helens school board voted last week to repeal a ban that was put in place in March to allow teachers who have concealed carry permits to have guns at school.

“Our teachers really are professionals, and as professionals, they should be respected, any more so than anybody else who can walk on our schools with concealed carry currently,” Marshall Porter, St. Helens school board chair, told KOIN-TV. “Our teachers should have that same right.”

KATU-TV reports the ban was set aside by a new group of school board members when it was originally instituted this past March.

“I would say that the risk is more likely that somebody who isn’t following the law is a higher risk to your child coming on to school property than the one that is going to do it legally,” Porter told KATU-TV.

Parents who spoke to KOIN about the decision agreed with the school board to repeal the ban.

“I think if you had teachers with guns you’d have a lot less rampages and incidents going as far as they’ve gone,” parent Israel Ray told KOIN.

Students, on the other hand, weren’t thrilled by the decision to allow teachers to carry guns in schools.

“If a teacher shot a person in front of everybody in the class, that would honestly scare me, and that’s not OK,” sophomore Sara Smuin told KOIN.

The repeal comes nearly a year after 26 people, including 20 children, were killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.

(TM and © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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