TOPEKA (KSNT) – A bill in the Kansas Legislature could introduce firearms safety training into Kansas school districts.

Senate Bill 116 was introduced in the Senate on Jan. 27 and later referred to the Senate Committee on Federal and State Affairs on Jan. 30. The bill would add firearm safety education programs to grades kindergarten through 12th grade.

During a committee meeting regarding the bill on Wednesday, numerous individuals, including both private citizens, representatives of different organizations and legislators, took time to give their support for the legislation or to oppose it. Among the opponents of the bill was the Kansas State Board of Education, Kansas Parents Teachers Association and Kansas National Education Association.

“We have been living in fear like it is normal to do so, hoping that our government can step up and provide effective change for the generation-long issues that we have been facing,” said Aarushi Pore, a student at Olathe North High School. “Seeing bills like SB 116 being proposed and promoted in our local government instills nothing but disappointment inside myself and every student in Kansas that has been living in relentless fear, because it does nothing to address the impending issue of ineffective gun control and school shootings. Yet it does everything to push political agendas.”

Proponents of the bill included the Congressional Sportsmen Foundation, National Rifle Association, Kansas State Rifle Association and National Shooting Sports Foundation. Kansas state representatives Rebecca Schmoe and Patrick Penn also said they support the bill.

“Through this bill, Mr. Chairman, the NRA is providing its Gold Standard programming,” Representative Patrick Penn said. “This is what we call the Eddie Eagle Program for firearm safety and training for Kansas kids. And its saving lives at no cost to the state… negligible impact to the state budget. In addition, the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks program that was developed with great care would also become the gold standard for the higher grade levels as you heard the revisor speak.”

To watch the committee meeting that took place this morning where legislators discussed the bill, click here. To read the bill in full, see the document below:

sb116_00_0000 by Matthew Self on Scribd