BABYLON, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — A security guard at Babylon High School is out of a job after his gun was found inside a school bathroom.

CBS2’s Hazel Sanchez was at the school Wednesday, where students and parents were shocked by the disturbing discovery.

A gun was found in a bathroom inside Babylon High School on Jan. 9, 2019. (Photo: CBS2)

The Babylon schools superintendent said a guard inside the high school left his unloaded gun unattended on a bathroom counter, setting off immediate emergency protocols. The incident happened after school hours and district officials said the students and staff were never in any danger. However, the guard, a retired Suffolk County police officer, was immediately fired.

“It could’ve been bad if a student or someone got a hold of it,” student Tricia Tripp said.

The school district sent a letter to parents describing what happened, saying the unloaded, holstered weapon was left unattended for only a short period of time before it was found.

Web Extra: Read the letter (.pdf)

A spokesperson told CBS2’s Sanchez, “The Babylon Union Free School District does not authorize weapons. There is a Board of Education policy on this which does not permit any employee to carry a weapon on school grounds or in any facility.”

The incident is raising a lot of questions about whether security guards should be allowed to be armed in schools.

“With what’s going on in the world right now, I feel as if it could be beneficial in a sense,” student Madison Schnappauf said. “But I feel as if it could also cause a lot of problems. So it would have to be done in the right way, and it would have to be done in a way where everybody could be kept safe in the situation.”

“In my opinion, I think they should (be armed) because, like, it would help. It would help if there was ever something like a shooter came in,” student Katie Levy added. “But I think if they were allowed to carry guns there would have to be more background tests and stuff to make sure they’re not going to use it when they are not supposed to.”

Babylon school officials have told parents they are reviewing the security protocols, and will make policy changes if they need to.