Olympia School Board passes school safety resolution

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Olympia School Board passes school safety resolution
The Olympia School Board has unanimously approved a resolution calling for common sense gun safety legislation, increased mental health education and services, opposition to efforts to arm educators and staff in schools, and support of a March for Our Lives on March 24 in Olympia.

The five-member Board of Directors passed the resolution during its March 5 board meeting. Director Scott Clifthorne said the resolution is modeled after one approved by the Seattle School Board in late February. Other school boards nationwide have also passed similar resolutions following the February 14, 2018 shooting that killed 17 people at a Florida high school.

The three-page resolution states in part that the school board supports sensible gun legislation to protect students and staff, including raising the age to purchase assault weapons to 21. It also calls for implementing enhanced background checks for assault weapons, banning the purchase and sale of "assault" or semi-automatic rifles and of any accessories designed to increase a gun's rate of fire, and establishing safety programs in schools that do NOT include arming educators or staff.

Additionally, the resolution supports legislation that provides "increased funding for programs, training, and school staffing, including but not limited to counselors, behavioral technicians, nurses, psychologists, and social workers, that support student and educator mental health, social and emotional learning, restorative justice, and combat bullying."

The board also specifically cites support for legislation currently under consideration by the Washington State Legislature that would enact some gun safety measures highlighted in the resolution. This includes Senate Bill 6620 and House Bill 3004, Engrossed Senate Bill 5992, and House Bill 1377.

Read the full version of Resolution 572