GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — No guns in schools has been a policy for many years, but one Michigan bill has a different approach in mind. In the Michigan House, a group of legislators has introduced a bill that would allow teachers to carry guns.
House Bill 4098, the School Protection Act, would allow individual districts to make the choice of having employees, who were licensed and trained, to carry weapons.
This bill would leave it to the school whether or not teachers would be allowed to carry on school premises.
Rep. Greg MacMaster (R-Kewadin), wrote on his website, "After the horrible tragedy in Connecticut, I received an outpouring of feedback from teachers and administrators wanting to know what they could do to keep their students safe. This bill gives school executives options and flexibility to protect their students and faculty."
Grand Rapids Democrat Brandon Dillon said, "I just think that the idea and message that we send to society and parents and students that putting more guns in schools is gong to make them safe is the entirely wrong message."
One major player in this controversial bill is the head of the House Republican Education Committee,
Republican Lisa Posthumus Lyons.
Lyons said she is very interested in the idea and seems to like the local control component but urges caution.
"But I'm in no rush to address legislation that deals with guns in our schools," she said. "I want to make sure that we're doing, crafting policy, that number one, keeps our kids safe in school and number two, is not based on reaction and emotion."
The future of this bill has been referred to her committee and she will have a big say in when, how and if it moves forward.
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Michigan is governed as a republic, with three branches of government: executive, legislative and judicial. The state also allows direct participation of the electorate by initiative, referendum, recall, and ratification.