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WEAPONS IN SCHOOL

Policy Number: 
Board File: JICI

The Board of Education will not tolerate unauthorized student possession or use of dangerous weapons on district property or at district sponsored activities. Such behavior is unacceptable, detrimental to the safety of others, and destructive to a positive learning environment.

Carrying, bringing, using, or possessing a dangerous weapon in a school building, on school grounds, in any school vehicle, or at any school-sponsored activity without the authorization of the school principal or the district is prohibited.

“Dangerous weapons” include, but are not limited to:

  1. Firearms, loaded or unloaded.
     
  2. Pellet or BB guns or other devices, whether operational or not, designed to propel projectiles by spring action or compressed air.
     
  3. Fixed-blade knives with blades that measure longer than three inches in length or spring-loaded knives or pocket knives with blades that measure longer than three and one-half inches in length (the knife blade will be measured from the hilt to the top of the blade); and any knives, regardless of length, which a student uses or presents in a threatening manner.
     
  4. Another object, device, instrument, material, or substance, whether animate or inanimate, used or intended to be used to inflict death or serious bodily injury.
     
  5. Any other object identified and defined as a dangerous weapon by state statute.

For purposes of this policy, a “firearm” includes:      

  1. Any weapon, including a starter gun, which will, or is designed to, or may readily be converted to expel a projectile by the action of an explosive;
     
  2. The frame or receiver of any such weapon;
     
  3. Any firearm muffler or firearm silencer; or
     
  4. Any explosive, incendiary, poison gas, bomb, grenade, or similar device.

School staff members shall confiscate dangerous weapons possessed in violation of this policy and submit them to the appropriate school administrator.  Law enforcement authorities shall also be contacted in accordance with applicable law.

Mandatory expulsion in accordance with state and federal law

The principal shall initiate expulsion proceedings for students who carry, bring, use or possess a firearm in a school building, on school grounds, in any school vehicle, or at any school-sponsored activity.  Unless expulsion is otherwise required by federal law, a student may, but need not, be expelled for violating this policy if, as soon as possible upon discovering that he or she is in possession of a dangerous weapon, the student notifies and delivers the weapon to a teacher, administrator, or other authorized person.

In accordance with federal and state law, expulsion shall be for one calendar year for any student who is determined to have brought a firearm to school without the authorization of the school or the District.  The superintendent may modify the length of this required expulsion period on a case-by-case basis.  Such modification must be in writing.  Any student bringing a firearm or other dangerous weapon to school shall be referred to the criminal justice or juvenile delinquency system. 

As required by law, the District shall maintain records which will describe the circumstances involving expulsion of students who bring weapons to school, including the name of the school, the number of students expelled, and the types of weapons involved.

Student possession or use of fixed-blade knives with blades that measure less than three inches in length or pocket knives with blades that measure less than three and one-half inches in length (the knife blade will be measured from the hilt to the of the blade), box cutters, razor blades, hobby knives and similar instruments without the specific authorization of a school official is prohibited.  The possession or use of such items without authorization may be grounds for disciplinary action including, but not limited to suspension or expulsion.

Discretionary discipline in accordance with state law

Carrying, using, actively displaying or threatening with the use of a firearm facsimile that could reasonably be mistaken for an actual firearm on district property, when being transported in vehicles dispatched by the district or one of its schools, during a school-sponsored or district-sponsored activity or event, and off school property when such conduct has a reasonable connection to school or any district curricular or non-curricular event without the authorization of the school or school district is prohibited.  Students who violate this policy provision may be subject to disciplinary action including but not limited to suspension and/or expulsion.

A student may seek prior authorization from the building principal to carry, bring, use or possess a firearm facsimile that could reasonably be mistaken for an actual firearm on school property for purposes of a school-related or non-school related activity.  A student’s failure to obtain such prior authorization is a violation of this policy provision and may result in disciplinary action, including but not limited to suspension and/or expulsion.  The principal’s decision to deny or permit a student to carry, bring, use or possess a firearm facsimile that could reasonably be mistaken for an actual firearm on school property shall be final.

School administrators shall consider violations of this policy provision on a case-by-case basis to determine whether suspension, expulsion or any other disciplinary action is appropriate based upon the individual facts and circumstances involved.
 

Current practice codified 1988
Adopted:  July 13, 1988
Revised:  August 17, 1988
Revised:  May 5, 1993
Revised:  October 6, 1993
Revised:  November 2, 1994
Revised:  February 7, 1996
Revised August 20, 1996
Revised:  August 19, 1997
Revised:  May 16, 2000
Revised:  August 7, 2001
Revised:  October 15, 2002
Revised legal references:  October 21, 2003
Revised:  April 19, 2005
Revised:  May 5, 2009
Revised:  November 3, 2009
Revised:  June 1, 2010
 

LEGAL REFS.:
18 U.S.C. 921(a)(3) federal definition of “firearm”
20 U. S.C. 7151 Gun-free Schools Act
C.R.S. 22-32-109.1(2)(a)(VII) (policy required as part of Safe Schools Plan)
C.R.S. 22-33-106(1)(d)(f) Grounds for suspension, expulsion, and denial of admission
 

CROSS REF.:
JKD/JKE, Student Suspension, Expulsion, and Classroom Removal