It seems an absolute anathema to what our kids are sent to school for.

Okay school is about learning but taking a semi automatic assault rifle apart, learning how to fire it and having nine to 13 year olds posing proudly for photos with one is surely beyond the pale.

The army have been putting the kids through their paces and one soldier said they just loved the guns, you know what kids are like.

And that was certainly the case with an 11-year-old boy who said it was really fun. He'd never held a gun before but said it felt amazing and cool.

But guns aren't amazing and they're certainly not cool, they're used for killing and they have no place in the schoolyard and kids have no place in learning how to use them.

You only have to look at the gun crazed United States to see the havoc they wreak in schoolyards, the second most common place where mass shootings occur.

In the past two years there have been almost 40 shootings, leaving just on 70 dead, most of them school kids.

You can't knock the army who were at the school by invitation and were well meaning, but you can question the school as to what value there is for a child to learn about and handle weaponry.

Now it's entered the political arena with the new Education Minister Nikki Kaye being grilled by her opponents at Parliament.

The Minister says it's not illegal but she now wants some guidelines around allowing guns in schools which her bureaucrats have gone away to work on.

Her opponent Labour's Chris Hipkins doesn't think semi automatic weapons should be in schools, full stop.


While he doesn't question the good intention and motivation of the army, guns are the wrong way to capture kids' imaginations and it's hard to argue with that.

If a child is to be allowed anywhere near a weapon, it's the parents' responsibility, not a school's.

In the United States it's got to the point where teachers are being encouraged to go to school armed and in many schools across the country, access to the classroom is controlled by a barricade device on the door.

Schools are becoming fortresses and gun drills are becoming as common as fire drills.

Guns in schools, surely it's a no brainer.