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School Board In Lander Considers Option To Allow Guns In School, With Restrictions

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"New Hampshire open carry 2009" by Lucio Eastman is licensed under CC BY 2.0
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During the Wyoming Legislature’s most recent session, lawmakers passed a bill to give school boards the option to allow guns in K-12 schools under certain circumstances, and the school board in Lander is beginning to consider what to do with the new option. 

 

Under the new law, school boards have the option to allow school district employees to carry a concealed weapon on school property. The law does have some qualifications — the employee must have a concealed carry permit and proper training, and they must keep the firearm secure in either a lockbox or biometric container while in the building.

Dave Barker is the Superintendent for Fremont County School District #1. He said his district is at the very beginning stages of the conversation, with the issue coming up for the first time during the last school board meeting. Currently they are preparing a survey for both parents and district employees. Barker said he doesn’t yet have an opinion on the matter.

“Just looking at different sides of the coin: I’ve heard from different people, and you read different things,” said Barker. “Some see a need, and some don’t. I’m really trying to gather as much information as possible before giving a recommendation either way.”

In addition to the surveys, Barker said they are looking at school districts in Utah and Colorado that have implemented similar options.

Maggie Mullen is Wyoming Public Radio's regional reporter with the Mountain West News Bureau. Her work has aired on NPR, Marketplace, Science Friday, and Here and Now. She was awarded a 2019 regional Edward R. Murrow Award for her story on the Black 14.
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