“All About Safety”: Stricter Gun Policy in Bend-La Pine Schools

An update to the district’s “no guns on campus” policy, including concealed carrying

(Update: added video, organization, district comments)

BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) – The punishment for bringing a gun onto school property at Bend-La Pine schools has always been determined by its own policy, which could include banning a person from a school. Now, bringing a gun to a school campus – even with a concealed carry permit – could result in a year in prison, a fine of $ 6,250, or both, under a new law from the State.

Senate Bill 554, which came into effect in September, gives school districts the power to enact more stringent gun policies. Part of the new law also includes educating the community about safe gun storage and safety.

Heather McNeil is a member of the Bend Chapter for Moms Demand Action, an organization that fights for public safety measures to protect people from gun violence. She gave testimony to the school board and insisted that the policy be passed.

“It’s all about safety,” McNeil said Friday. “It’s about taking care of our children. Blockages happen, and they’re so terrifying, and we have to do what we can to make sure the kids are safe.”

McNeil’s daughter graduated from Summit High School.

“If my child was still in school, I would take a deep breath of relief,” she said. “Just to know that the school district takes this seriously and cares about the safety of the children – it relieves me and I’m proud that this is what they are doing and that they recognize the importance of this.”

Bend-La Pine Schools is one of three school districts in Oregon that have adopted this policy.

District spokesperson Julianne Repman told NewsChannel 21 why they voted for its implementation.

“We really think it’s something that helps create a better environment for teaching and learning,” said Repman. “It takes some of the stress out of our students, staff and those who volunteer at our schools to know that we are taking that extra step to create that learning environment where they can truly thrive and not. worry about their safety. “

The change will begin in the New Year and there will be an increase in signage and education.

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