topleft >  Services >  Governance Technology > 

Vista USD |  BP  5131.7  Students

Weapons And Dangerous Instruments   

arrow Previous bar Next arrow

The Board of Trustees desires students and staff to be free from the danger presented by firearms and other weapons and recognizes that they have the right to a safe and secure campus free from psychological and physical harm.

Possession of Weapons

The Board of Trustees prohibits any person other than authorized law enforcement or security personnel from possessing weapons, imitation firearms, or dangerous instruments of any kind in school buildings, on school grounds or buses, at school-related or school-sponsored activities away from school, or while going to or coming from school.

Unless he/she has obtained prior written permission as specified below, any student who is determined to have brought a firearm to school or possessed a firearm at school, as verified by a school employee, shall be expelled for not less than one year, except that the Board may set an earlier date for readmission on a case-by-case basis, in accordance with Board policy and administrative regulation. (Education Code 48915; 20 USC 7151)

Students possessing or threatening others with any weapon, dangerous instrument, or imitation firearm are subject to suspension and/or expulsion in accordance with law, Board policy, and administrative regulations.

Under the power granted to the Board to maintain order and discipline in the schools and to protect the safety of students, staff, and the public, any school employee is authorized to confiscate a weapon, dangerous instrument, or imitation firearm from any person on school grounds.

The principal or designee shall notify law enforcement authorities when any student possesses a weapon without permission or commits any act of assault with a firearm or other weapon. (Education Code 48902; Penal Code 245, 626.9, 626.10; 20 USC 7151)

Advance Permission for Possession of a Firearm for Educational Use

A student who desires to possess or transport a firearm or imitation firearm on school grounds for an educational purpose shall request prior permission from the principal at least five school days in advance of the planned possession. The student's parent/guardian shall provide written permission explaining the planned use of the weapon and the duration. The student shall also submit a written explanation from the staff person responsible for the school-sponsored activity or class.

On a case-by-case basis, the principal shall determine whether to grant permission for such possession when necessary for a school-sponsored activity or class or as part of the educational program. Factors that shall be considered include, but are not limited to, the planned use of the weapon, the duration and location of the planned use, whether an audience

is expected, and any perceived adverse effects to the safety and well-being of students or staff. If the principal grants such permission, he/she shall provide the student and staff person with a written explanation regarding any limitations and the permissible duration of the student's possession.

The principal and/or a staff member with knowledge of firearm safety shall inspect the weapon to ensure that necessary safety precautions have been taken, including inspection to ensure that no live ammunition is present. The firearm shall be stored in a locked vehicle or in an appropriate, locked container before and after the educational activity.

A student granted permission to possess a firearm may be suspended and/or expelled if he/she possesses or uses the weapon inappropriately.

Reporting of Dangerous Objects

The Board encourages students to promptly report the presence of weapons, injurious objects, or other suspicious activity to school authorities. The identity of a student who reports such activity shall remain confidential to the extent permitted by law.

Legal Reference:


35291 Governing board to prescribe rules for discipline of the schools

48900 Grounds for suspension/expulsion

48902 Notification of law enforcement authorities

48915 Required recommendation for expulsions

48916 Readmission

49330-49335 Injurious objects


245 Assault with deadly weapon

417.4 Imitation firearm; drawing or exhibiting

626.9 Gun-Free School Zone Act of 1995

626.10 Dirks, daggers, knives, razor or stun gun; bringing or possessing in school

653k Switchblade knife

16100-17350 Definitions

22810-23025 Tear gas weapon (pepper spray)

25200-25225 Firearms, access to children

30310 Prohibition against ammunition on school grounds


6301-7941 No Child Left Behind Act, especially:

7151 Gun-Free Schools Act

Management Resources:


Safe Schools: Strategies for Governing Boards to Ensure Student Success, Third Edition, October 2011


0401.01 Protecting Student Identification in Reporting Injurious Objects


Guidance Concerning State and Local Responsibilities Under the Gun-Free Schools Act, January 2004



California Department of Education, Safe Schools:

National Alliance for Safe Schools:

National School Safety Center:

U.S. Department of Education, Office of Safe and Drug Free Schools:


adopted: December 9, 2010 Vista, California