Seattle Public Schools

4210 Weapons Prohibition for Adults and Visitors

It is the policy of the Seattle School Board that except for authorized law enforcement personnel all members of the public, including but not limited to non-Seattle students, employees, visitors, and vendors/contractors are prohibited from carrying or possessing weapons on school property, on school-provided transportation, in areas of facilities being used exclusively by the district, or at school-sponsored events or activities.   

To keep students, staff, and visitors safe, weapons are broadly defined as:  firearms, “dangerous weapons” as defined in RCW 9.41.250 and district policies and procedures, nunchucka sticks, throwing stars, “explosive devices,” BB guns, pellet guns, air guns, slingshots, hand clubs, knives, box cutters, stun guns, and taser guns.   The definition of weapon also includes any object, device, or instrument that is being used with the intent to harm a person or displayed with the intent to intimidate another person.      

Individuals shall be exempt from this policy only to the extent permitted by law, which includes individuals engaged in authorized military or law enforcement activities. 

This policy does not apply to employees and vendors/contractors who possess devices or objects that are used in the course of their employment (e.g., tools, box cutter, scalpel, or kitchen knife).   Non-student visitors may carry a small folding knife (2-½ inch blade or less) for personal use, provided the knife is not used or displayed as a weapon.   This policy does not apply to kitchen knives when possessed and used for food preparation and culinary purposes. 

Individuals eighteen years of age or older and not enrolled as a student may have firearms or dangerous weapons in their possession on school property outside of school buildings under the following limited conditions:

  1. A person who has a permit issued pursuant to RCW 9.41.070 for concealed weapons is picking up or dropping off a student.
  2. A person who is exempt from the licensing requirements in RCW 9.41.060 is picking up or dropping off a student.
  3. A person conducting legitimate business at the school and in lawful possession of a firearm or dangerous weapon if the item is secured within an attended vehicle; is unloaded and secured in vehicle; or is concealed from view in a locked, unattended vehicle.

Individuals over eighteen years of age and individuals between fourteen and eighteen years of age with written parental or guardian permission may possess personal protection spray devices on school property.  Individuals younger than 14 years of age may not possess personal protection spray devices.  Personal protection spray devices may only be used in a manner consistent with the authorized use of force law as stated in RCW 9A.16.020.  

The Superintendent is directed to ensure that all school facilities post “Gun-Free Zone” signs, and that all violations of RCW 9.41.280 be reported to law enforcement and the Safety and Security Department.    

The Superintendent is granted the authority to develop procedures to implement this policy.