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501 School Weapons Policy

 

I.  PURPOSE

The purpose of this policy is to assure a safe school environment for students, staff and the public.

 

II.  GENERAL STATEMENT OF POLICY

No person may possess, use or distribute a weapon when in a school district property or at any school sponsored event, except as provided in this policy.  The school district will act to enforce this policy and to discipline or take appropriate action against any person who violates this policy.

 

III. DEFINITIONS

A. “Weapon”

1. A “weapon” means any object, device or instrument designed as a weapon or through its use is capable of threatening or producing bodily harm or which may be used to inflict self-injury including, but not limited to, any firearm, whether loaded or unloaded; air guns; pellet guns; BB guns; all knives; blades; clubs; metal knuckles; nun-chucks; throwing stars; explosives; fireworks; flammable liquids; mace and other propellants; stun guns; ammunition; poisons; chains; arrows; and objects that have been modified to serve as a weapon.

2. No person shall possess, use or distribute any object, device or instrument having the appearance of a weapon and such objects, devices or instruments shall be treated as weapons including, but not limited to, weapons listed above which are broken or non-functional, look-alike guns; toy guns; and any object that is a facsimile of a real weapon.

3. No person shall use items designed for other purposes (e.g. lasers or laser pointers, belts, combs, pencils, files, scissors, etc.), with the intent to threaten or inflict bodily harm or intimidate and such use will be treated as the possession and use of a weapon.

B. “School Location” includes any school building or grounds, whether leased, rented, owned or controlled by the school, locations of school activities or trips, bus stops, school buses or school vehicles, school-contracted vehicles, the area of entrance or departure from school premises or events, all locations where school-related functions are conducted, and anywhere students are under the jurisdiction of the school district.

C. “Possession” means having a weapon on one’s person or in an area subject to one’s control in a school location.

 

IV.  EXCEPTIONS

A. A student who finds a weapon on the way to school or in a school location, or a student who discovers that he or she accidentally has a weapon in his or her possession, and takes the weapon immediately to the principal’s office shall not be considered to possess a weapon.  If it would be impractical or dangerous to take the weapon to the principal’s office, a student shall not be considered to possess a weapon if he or she immediately turns the weapon over to an administrator, teacher or head coach or immediately notifies  any school staff, bus driver, teacher or coach of the weapon’s location.

B. It shall not be a violation of this policy if a nonstudent (or student where specified) falls within one of the following categories:

This subdivision does not apply to:

1. active licensed peace officers;

2. military personnel or students participating in military training, who are on-duty, performing official duties;

3. persons authorized to carry a pistol under section 624.714 while in a motor vehicle or outside of a motor vehicle to directly place a firearm in, or retrieve it from, the trunk or rear area of the vehicle;

4. persons who keep or store in a motor vehicle pistols in accordance with section 624.714 or 624.715 or other firearms in accordance with section 97B.045;

5.firearm safety or marksmanship courses or activities conducted on school property;

6. possession of dangerous weapons, BB guns, or replica firearms by a ceremonial color guard;

7. a gun or knife show held on school property;

8. possession of dangerous weapons, BB guns, or replica firearms with written permission of the principal or other person having general control and supervision of the school or the director of a child care center; or

9. persons who are on unimproved property owned or leased by a child care center, school, or school district unless the person knows that a student is currently present on the land for a school-related activity.

 

V. CONSEQUENCES FOR STUDENT WEAPON POSSESSION/USE/DISTRIBUTION

A. The school district takes a firm position in regard to the possession, use or distribution of weapons by students.  Consequently, the consequence for students possessing, using or distributing weapons may include:

1. immediate out-of-school suspension;

2. confiscation of the weapon;

3. notification of police;

4. parent or guardian notification; and

5.  recommendation to the Superintendent/designee of expulsion or exclusion  for a period of time not to exceed one year.

B. Pursuant to Minnesota law, a student who brings a firearm, as defined by federal law, to school will be expelled for at least one year.  The School Board may modify this requirement on a case-by-case basis.

C. Administrative Discretion

While the school district takes a firm position on the possession, use or distribution of weapons by students, the Superintendent/designee may use discretion in determining whether, under the circumstances, a course of action other than the minimum consequences specified above is warranted.  If so, other appropriate action may be taken, including consideration of a recommendation for lesser discipline.

 

VI.       CONSEQUENCES FOR WEAPON POSSESSION/USE/DISTRIBUTION BY NONSTUDENTS

A. Employees

1. An employee who violates the terms of this policy is subject to disciplinary action, including nonrenewal, suspension, or discharge as deemed appropriate by the School Board.

2. Sanctions against employees, including nonrenewal, suspension, or discharge shall be pursuant to and in accordance with applicable statutory authority, collective bargaining agreements, and school district policies.

3. When an employee violates the weapons policy, law enforcement may be notified, as appropriate.

B.  Other Nonstudents

1. Any member of the public who violates this policy shall be informed of the policy and asked to leave the school location.  Depending on the circumstances, the person may be barred from future entry to school locations.  In addition, if the person is a student in another school district, that school district may be contacted concerning the policy violation.

2. Law enforcement will be notified of the policy violation by the member of the public and may be asked to provide an escort to remove the member of the public from the school location.

 

Legal References:     

Minn. Stat. § 121A.40-121A.56 (Pupil Fair Dismissal Act)

Minn. Stat. § 121A.44 (Expulsion for Possession of Firearm)

Minn. Stat. § 121A.05 (Referral to Police)

Minn. Stat. § 609.66 (Dangerous Weapons)

Minn. Stat. § 609.605 (Trespass)

Minn. Stat. § 609.02, Subd. 6 (Definition of Dangerous Weapon)

Minn. Stat. § 97B.045 (Transportation of Firearms)

Minn. Stat. § 624.714 (Carrying of Weapons without Permit; Penalties)

Minn. Stat. § 624.715 (Exemptions; Antiques and Ornaments)

18 U.S.C. § 921 (Definition of Firearm)

In re C.R.M. 611 N.W.2d 802 (Minn. 2000)

 

Cross References:     

MSBA/MASA Model Policy 403 (Discipline, Suspension, and Dismissal of School District Employees)

MSBA/MASA Model Policy 506 (Student Discipline)

MSBA/MASA Model Policy 525 (Violence Prevention)

 

 

 

POLICY ADOPTED:  February 17, 2009  

POLICY REVISED: December 4, 2014, March 25, 2021

 

 

Policy

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