State Lawmakers spar over gun safety courses

Local News

Democrats pushed back Thursday against a Republican measure that would allow Wisconsin high schools to offer gun safety courses, arguing such classes aren’t appropriate and could generate fear in classrooms.

The bill calls for the State Superintendent to work with the Department of Natural Resources, police or an organization that specializes in firearm safety to develop the curriculum for the course.

Schools wouldn’t be required to offer the class and live ammunition wouldn’t be allowed.

At least eight states had similar laws in place as of the end of 2015, including Arizona, Connecticut and Louisiana.

Lawmakers in Idaho and North Carolina are currently considering similar bills, although neither measure has gotten a hearing yet.

Wisconsin school districts already have the authority to create such classes on their own, but Rep. Ken Skowronski, one of the Wisconsin measure’s authors, said districts are looking for guidance on how to set them up as the popularity of trap and target shooting teams grows.

The committee wasn’t expected to vote on the bill Thursday.

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