Schools take aim: BOE members want control of gun policy

NASHUA – A majority of Board of Education members want to declare the Nashua School District a gun-free zone, but current state law forbids them from doing so.

Therefore, members voted 5-4 this week to send a letter to the New Hampshire Legislature expressing support for House Bill 101. This would allow a school district, school administrative unit, or chartered public school to adopt and enforce a policy regulating firearms, firearms components, ammunition, firearms supplies, or knives within its jurisdiction.

Current state law prohibits local governments from regulating firearms, except in very narrow circumstances. In 2017, Gov. Chris Sununu signed Senate Bill 12 into law, which allows concealed carry of firearms without a permit.

In October, the Nashua School District’s Weapons on School Property policy had to be changed to align with state law. The original policy stated: “Weapons are not permitted on school property, in school vehicles or at school-sponsored activities. This policy applies to students and members of the public alike. Student violations of this policy will result on both school disciplinary action and notification of local law enforcement authorities. Members of the public who violate this will be reported to local law enforcement authorities. Any person who brings a weapon on school property will be reported to law enforcement authorities.”

The board amended the policy by removing the second and fourth lines.