States that allow teachers and school staff to carry guns

9 Mar , 2018  

After the Parkland, Florida high school shooting, a number of states have considered allowing teachers and staff to carry concealed handguns.  The obvious question is how has it worked in the states that allow guns to be carried.  For example, here is information on accidental shootings.  There are no known cases where a teacher or staff member has had their gun taken from them.
After the Parkland attack, there is evidence that strong interest by many teachers in carrying.  In one Ohio county (Butler), there were 50 requests by teachers for training within 20 minutes of the local sheriff offering training, with 300 teachers eventually signing up before the window was closed on more applicants.  It isn’t clear how many teachers in that county were already carrying.
Here is a list of the state laws.
Alabama (which bans possessing a weapon on school grounds only if the carrier has “intent to do bodily harm”)
Arkansas (with approval of the superintendent) — March 7, 2018, 13 districts (according to the local president of Moms Demand Action)
California had allowed concealed carry on school grounds until it passed a law in 2015 that required the approval of the school administrator.  However, beginning on October 14, 2017 a new law took away that authority from school administrators (more here).
Connecticut (with approval of “school officials”)
Georgia  (with school board approval) — school districts discussing it, but none apparently allows it yet.
Hawaii (no specific law)
Idaho (with school trustees’ approval) “a handful” of school districts allow staffers and teachers to carry, and here
Indiana (2013 law that lets school boards decide) February 23, 2018: “most don’t. more might start
Iowa (with “authorization”) — no district currently allows.
Kansas (school districts may allow employees with concealed-carry permits to carry guns on campus if the district does not have a policy prohibiting it)
Massachusetts (with approval of the school board or principal)
Michigan (as long as the gun is carried openly)
Minnesota (with approval of School Superintendent) — some do it
Mississippi (with school board approval)
Missouri (with school board approval) Crocker School Board Approves Arming Teachers
Montana (with school trustees’ permission) — In 2017, Belfry, Custer, and Lima school districts allowed teachers and staff members to carry. Another school district allowed a former teacher to carry.  Two others allow current staff members to carry, but they weren’t currently carrying.
New Hampshire (ban applies only to pupils, not adults) more here
New Jersey (with approval from the school’s “governing officer”)
New York (with the school’s approval)
Ohio (with school board approval) — in 2015, at least 40 School Districts in Ohio allow Teachers to Carry Permitted Concealed Handguns.  Right now there are reportedly over 100 school districts.
Oregon (any permit holders, some school districts prevent employees from carrying)
Rhode Island (with a state concealed weapons permit)
South Dakota ( “school sentinels” law authorizes districts to create, establish and supervise the arming of school employees, hired security personnel or volunteers.)
Tennessee (allows certain school employees to carry a firearm on school grounds if they are licensed, meet certain qualifications, and have written authorization from authorities)
Texas (with the school’s permission) — Texas Association of School Boards says 172 school districts in Texas allow staff and board members to carry firearms onto school premises
Utah (with approval of the “responsible school administrator”) — about 5% of the public school teachers in the state carry and about 10% to 12% of the support staff.
Washington (eight schools in the Toppenish School District have nineteen administrators who carry)
Wyoming (as long as it’s not concealed)
Sources for information available here, here, here, and here.
Bills enacted into law during 2013 for Alabama, Arkansas, Kansas, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee, and Texas (the NCSL as of July 2013 had all these states but Oklahoma).  Obviously, Georgia’s law was enacted during 2014.  If you are interested in a list from a very left-wing anti-gun group, you can go to the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence.


3 Responses

  1. MikeyParks says:

    The outcry before carry legalization is always “Allowing the carrying of guns will result in turning this into Dodge City – gunfights in the streets and innocents murdered in their beds.” Yet this has NEVER been the case. In fact, the opposite can be demonstrated. So when will the doomsters ever learn their lesson? Gun prohibitions only affect the law abiding. The criminal never has had any prohibitions and never will.

  2. Blaine Nay says:

    For Utah, you say, “with approval of the “responsible school administrator”. That is incorrect. Whether anyone who has a concealed-carry permit — including school staff — has a permit and/or is carrying is no business of any school administrator. In fact, they have been told not to ask. The only permission anyone needs to carry in Utah schools is a Utah concealed firearm permit. That has been the case for over two decades.

    Contrary to various paranoid comments, no teacher has had his/her gun stolen by a student. No teacher has shot a student for being rowdy, for tardiness, or for getting bad grades.

    Utah’s teachers have proven that there is no need for special tactical training as is being required in other jurisdiction.

  3. David M. Bennett says:

    Michigan needs clarification. Open carry is only allowed with a valid concealed carry permit (let it never be said gun laws make sense). That said the law is actually being litigated as some school districts are trespassing lawfully armed adults despite state preemption laws.

    In my humble opinion, a shoot-out is better than a massacre and teachers should be ‘allowed’ to exercise their constitutional right to carry. Un-infringed, the Second Amendment is self-mitigating. I find it hypocritical that the very same suspects responsible for the creation of ‘Second Amendment-free Zones’, blaming the same constitutional right for the predictable carnage that results in these gun-free areas.

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