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SD among seven states to adopt new school gun laws after Newtown

Following the December mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Conn., at least 30 states have proposed laws that would allow school employees or others to carry firearms in primary and secondary schools, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

 In most states, the bills have failed, but seven of the states — including South Dakota — have passed some form of legislation to allow teachers, administrators or others to carry weapons.

 The seven states and specific legislation are:

 • Alabama HB 404: Authorizes specific counties in Alabama to allow current and retired school employees to form volunteer emergency security forces, and districts must establish policies addressing the carrying and storage of their weapons.

 • Arkansas SB 896: Authorizes a church that operates a private school to allow people with concealed-carry permits to carry on school property.

 • Kansas HB 2052: Provides that school districts may allow employees with concealed-carry permits to carry on campus if the district does not have a policy prohibiting it.

 • Oklahoma HB 1622: Authorizes private schools to allow those with concealed carry permits to carry on school grounds with additional certification if a policy has been adopted by the governing entity of the private school that authorizes the carrying and possession of a weapon on private school property.

 • South Dakota HB 1087: This “school sentinels” law authorizes districts to create, establish, and supervise the arming of school employees, hired security personnel or volunteers.

 • Tennessee HB 6: Allows certain school employees to carry a firearm on school grounds if they are licensed, meet certain qualifications, and have written authorization from law enforcement and school authorities.

 • Texas HB 1009: Creates a “school marshal” program in which current school employees may participate and carry a concealed weapon with certain licensing and qualifications, and under certain circumstances.