It is a violation of district policy and state law for any person to carry a firearm or dangerous weapon on school premises, school-provided transportation or areas of other facilities being used exclusively for school activities unless specifically authorized by state law. Carrying a dangerous weapon onto school premises, school-provided transportation, or areas of other facilities being used exclusively for school activities in violation of RCW 9.41.280 is a criminal offense.
The superintendent is directed to see that all school facilities post “Gun-Free Zone” signs, and that all violations of this policy and RCW 9.41.280 are reported annually to the Superintendent of Public Instruction.
The term “dangerous weapons” under state law includes:
- Any firearm;
- Any device commonly known as “nun-chu-ka sticks,” consisting of two or more length of wood, metal, plastic, or similar substance connected with wire, rope, or other means;
- Any device, commonly known as “throwing stars,” which are multi-pointed, metal objects designed to embed upon impact from any aspect;
- Any air gun, including any air pistol or air rifle, designed to propel a BB, pellet, or other projectile by the discharge of compressed air, carbon dioxide, or other gas;
- Any portable device manufactured to function as a weapon and which is commonly known as a stun gun, including a projectile stun gun which projects wired probes that are attached to the device that emit an electrical charge designed to administer to a person or an animal an electric shock, charge, or impulse;
- Any device, object, or instrument which is used or intended to be used as a weapon with the intent to injure a person by an electric shock, charge, or impulse;
- The following instruments:
- Any dirk or dagger;
- Any knife with a blade longer than three inches;
- Any knife with a blade which is automatically released by a spring mechanism or other mechanical device;
- Any knife having a blade which opens, or falls or is ejected into position by the force of gravity, or by outward, downward, or centrifugal thrust or movement; and
- Any razor with an unguarded blade;
- Any slung shot, sandbag, or sandclub;
- Metal knuckles;
- A sling shot;
- Any metal pipe or bar used or intended to be used as a club;
- Any explosive;
- Any weapon containing poisonous or injurious gas;
- Any implement or instrument which has the capacity to inflict death and from the manner in which it is used, is likely to produce or may easily and readily produce death
In addition, the District considers the following weapons in violation of this policy:
- Any knife or razor not listed above, except for instruments authorized or provided for specific school activities;
- Any object other than those listed above which is used in a manner to intimidate, threaten, or injure another person and is capable of easily and readily producing such injury.
Reporting Dangerous Weapons
An appropriate school authority will promptly notify the student’s parents or guardians and the appropriate law enforcement agency of known or suspected violations of this policy. Students who violate this policy will be subject to discipline. Students who have possessed a firearm on any school premises, school-provided transportation, or school-sponsored activities at any facility shall be expelled for not less than one year pursuant to RCW 28A.600.420. The superintendent may modify the one-year expulsion for a firearm on a case-by-case basis.
The district may also suspend or expel a student for up to one year if the student acts with malice (as defined under RCW 9A.04.110) and displays a device that appears to be a firearm.
No expulsion under RCW 28A.600.420 prevents the district from continuing to provide educational services in an alternative educational setting in compliance with RCW 28A.600.015. Any alternative setting should be comparable, equitable, and appropriate to the regular education services a student would have received without the exclusionary discipline. Example alternative settings include one-on-one tutoring and online learning.
Exceptions to State Law and this Policy
The following persons may carry firearms into school buildings, as necessary, although students engaged in these activities are restricted to the possession of rifles on school premises:
A. Persons engaged in military, law enforcement, or school district security activities;
B. Persons involved in a school authorized convention, showing, demonstration, lecture or firearm safety course;
C. Persons competing in school authorized firearm or air gun competitions; and
D. Any federal, state or local law enforcement officer.
The following persons over eighteen years of age and not enrolled as students may have firearms in their possession on school property outside of school buildings:
A. Persons with concealed weapons permits issued pursuant to RCW 9.41.070 who are picking up or dropping off students; and
B. Persons conducting legitimate business at the school and in lawful possession of a firearm or dangerous weapon if the weapon is secured within an attended vehicle, is unloaded and secured in a vehicle, or is concealed from view in a locked, unattended vehicle.
Persons may bring dangerous weapons, other than firearms, onto school premises if the weapons are lawfully within the person's possession and are to be used in a school-authorized martial arts class.
Personal Protection Spray
Persons over eighteen years of age, and persons between fourteen and eighteen years of age with written parental or guardian permission, may possess personal protection spray devices on school property. No one under eighteen years of age may deliver such devices. No one eighteen years or older may deliver a spray device to anyone under fourteen, or to anyone between fourteen and eighteen who does not have parental permission.
Personal protection spray devices may not be used other than in self-defense as defined by state law. Possession, transmission or use of personal protection spray devices under any other circumstances is a violation of district policy.
Student Conduct Expectations and Reasonable Sanctions - Policy 3240
Use of School Facilities - Policy 4330
Use of force - when lawful - RCW 9A.16.020
Dangerous weapons—Penalty - RCW 9.41.250
Dangerous weapons on facilities—Penalty — Exceptions - RCW 9.41.280
Personal protection spray devices - RCW 9.91.160
Deadly weapon special verdict—definition - RCW 9.94A.225
Firearms on school premises, transportation, or facilities — Penalty — Exemptions - RCW 28A.600.420
2016 – July Issue
Policy News, August 2006 Weapons on School Premises
Policy News, August 1998 State Encourages Modification of Weapons Policy
Policy News, October 1997 Legislature also addresses “look-alike” firearms
Highline School District 401
Adopted by the Board: December, 1991
Revised by the Board: 02.04, 10.16