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Little Rock School District to encourage safe gun storage via student handbook

Little Rock School District makes strides to encourage safety both on and off campus by sharing information on safe gun storage through their student handbook.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — Educating students has always been the goal of the Little Rock School District, but so has being able to keep the students safe while they learn. 

The school board has made strides to encourage safety off campus as well.

"Because it's all about safety, and we all want that," Vicki Hatter, school board member, said.

Hatter hasn't been the only one who has had that idea— it's been shared by other members of the Little Rock School District Board as well.

"We need to take care of those really basic concerns if we're going to be able to help them to maximize the potential for learning," Greg Adams, school board president, said.

Of course, learning is the goal. To do that, though, you've got to have the right environment, and the board is thinking bigger than just the classroom.

"This is one of those things that, one of the reasons I think we had unanimous consent is because this is not a partisan issue," Adams said. "No one wants to see a child hurt by a gun."

In an effort to hopefully avoid many issues that could come from improperly stored guns.

Starting next year, the student handbook for Little Rock School District students will share information on safe gun storage.

"We know that more likely than not, our children would be in the homes, or around guns," Hatter said.

It's also an effort that's shared by their neighbors down the street.

"For children, you know, coming across a weapon that's unsecure, that may be loaded, that's another aspect of gun safety," Sergeant Eric Barnes with the Little Rock Police Department, said.

Sgt. Barnes explained that just this year alone, 537 guns have been stolen across Little Rock. 

222 of those were guns left in cars.

"The people that are breaking into these cars aren't just getting a weapon for their own good," Sgt. Barnes described. "They have other intents potentially, that could harm, you know, the city."

Though there's no guarantee that this will change anything, it's a start. 

LRSD explained that anything they can do to encourage student safety is a win in the eyes of the school board.

"We're trying to look at the big picture about how we can help our students be safe both on our campuses and in our homes," Adams said. "And this is a part of that."

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