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Concealed firearms banned on Ashland school grounds

Ashland Senior High School.
Erik Neumann
Ashland Senior High School.

The Ashland School Board unanimously voted to ban concealed carry firearms on school grounds earlier this week.

The vote follows similar decisions made by other school districts in Oregon, including Portland Public Schools, Salem Keizer Public Schools, Klamath Falls, Myrtle Point and others.

These emerging policies are based on Senate Bill 544 which was passed by the Oregon Legislature in 2022.

Before the ban, school visitors were allowed to carry concealed firearms on district property as long as they had the appropriate license.

According to Rebecca Dyson, the vice chair of the Ashland School Board, the decision is in line with the Ashland community’s stance on guns in schools.

“I think Ashland as a community is in favor of not allowing weapons on campus. Our policy in general is: the less the better," Dyson said.

Anyone who violates the new policy can be removed from the school premises, issued a trespass citation or referred to the police. The policy does not apply to school officers.

Noah is a broadcast journalist and podcast producer who was born and raised in Salem, Oregon. He came to Jefferson Public Radio through the Charles Snowden Program of Excellence after graduating with a BS in journalism from the University of Oregon. In his spare time, Noah enjoys backpacking, scuba diving and writing music.