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Weapons policy updated at Elkhorn School District

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STANLEY B. MILAM
March 6, 2012
— The new weapons policy for Elkhorn schools prohibits concealed carry permit holders from having firearms on school property but continues to allow police officers to carry their weapons in schools.

At first glance, it appeared as if the new policy banned anybody from having a firearm on school property except those individuals with the "right to possess a firearm."


Elkhorn Area School District Superintendent Gregory Wescott said the new policy continues to ban possession of firearms in district-owned school buildings.


The new policy adopted by the school board last week states that "no person, including someone with a state-issued concealed carry license, shall use or possess a firearm in school buildings."


The policy goes on the state, however, that "This prohibition does not apply where state law allows any individual's right to possess a firearm."


Confusion?


Not if you read the entire policy and have an understanding of state law regulating firearms on school property, Wescott said.


"What the policy does is ban firearms from school property except for police officers, off duty officers and firearms used for educational purposes and hunter safety classes," Wescott said. "That's what we mean in the exception referring to individual's right to possess a firearm."


The new weapons policy was not a reaction to an incident, Wescott said.


"This was a routine update to a state law change, mainly concealed carry," Wescott said. "Our policy committee routinely acts on changes in state and federal laws to make sure our policies are consistent."


The district receives guidance from the Wisconsin Association of School Boards on law and rule changes.


"The policy committee is one our most active committees," Wescott said. "It routinely has one or two policy modifications each month."



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