West Linn-Wilsonville School Board to mull firearms policy
A policy hitting the West Linn-Wilsonville School Board table next week could tighten gun rules on school district campuses.
During the June 6 board meeting, members are set to vote on a policy that would extend the district's firearms ban to include concealed weapons.
The proposed policy mirrors Oregon Senate Bill 554, which was passed in early 2021 and allowed school districts to prohibit visitors from bringing firearms on campuses — including those with concealed-carry licenses. The policy also would cover school buses, stadiums, athletic fields and the administration office.
Currently, the district has two policies that prohibit firearms for students and staff on campus regardless of concealed-license permits. The new proposal would tighten these restrictions, stating that anyone entering a school district facility cannot have a firearm present.
According to Communications Director Andrew Kilstrom, the proposed policy has been a hot topic among district staff for some time. Staff had hoped to bring it in front of the board earlier this year, but due to the board's lengthy agenda, the policy introduction was pushed back.
"But now the item is increasingly important, obviously given the recent tragedies across the nation," Kilstrom said.
According to Oregon Public Broadcasting, just 13% of Oregon public school districts have chosen to use Senate Bill 554 in implementing the concealed-carry ban.
On Tuesday, May 24, 19 primary school students and two teachers were killed in a mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas. It marked the 27th school shooting in the United States this year, according to Education Week. Since the shooting, there have been 20 mass shootings across the nation, according to Gun Violence Archive — one of which was at a graduation in New Orleans.
The school board will meet at 6 p.m Monday, June 6. In-person public comment is available for those who would like to speak on the proposed policy.
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