Missouri Offers Gun Safety Classes for 1st Graders

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Missouri schools will be encouraged to teach first-graders a gun safety course sponsored by the National Rifle Association as a result of legislation signed Friday by Gov. Jay Nixon.
The new law stops short of requiring schools to teach the Eddie Eagle Gunsafe Program. But by putting it in state law, Missouri is providing one of the stronger state-sanctioned endorsements of the NRA-sponsored firearms safety course, which the group says is taught to about 1 million children annually.
The legislation also requires school personnel to participate in an “active shooter and intruder” drill led by law enforcement officers.
Both the staff and student training initially were proposed as mandates when the legislation was filed on Dec. 13, which was the day before a gunman massacred 26 people in a Connecticut elementary school, including 20 first-graders. The provision about the first-grade gun-safety course was amended to make it optional during Senate debate.
The legislation also transfers the responsibility for issuing identification cards for concealed gun permits from driver’s license clerks to local sheriffs. That change was prompted by concerns that the state licensing agency’s procedures had infringed on people’s privacy rights.
Nixon noted the change in concealed carry permits — not the school gun-safety programs — while announcing he was signing the legislation. Asked if he supported the NRA’s gun safety course for first-graders, Nixon merely noted that it was optional.
“Allowing the local school districts to make those choices is appropriate,” he said.
The legislation was one of several pro-gun measures passed this year by Missouri’s Republican-led Legislature.
Nixon, a Democrat, vetoed a bill last week that would have allowed federal agents to be charged with state crimes for trying to enforce various federal gun control laws. The vetoed bill also could have landed Missouri journalists in jail for publishing the names of gun owners and would have let specially trained teachers and administrators carry concealed guns into schools.

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  • Mom

    Really?? When I was in first grade I still didn’t understand wrong from right. I tested the waters. In 3RD GRADE i even put a truck out of gear while person watching me went inside gas station to pay bc he told me not to do it and I went rolling down the road just bc I was told not to. Some kids are like that and I could just picture the, shooting someone by just bc told not to. That’s way to young! Not saying all children would test the waters but that’s too young!

    • wvbh17

      You must have been a very slow learner

      • Mom

        You are very quick to judge and you are incorrect. I actually am advanced and skipped a grade because of that and was the youngest to graduate at my high school and I am a college graduate, etc. I understand you don’t agree with me. Actually, I looked into this and talked to someone and realize that this safety class isn’t as bad as I thought once I learned more about it. I hope you do not judge people so go fast in the future 😉

  • Douglas Moore

    This is a good thing. It teaches gun safety and takes the mystery out of wanting to know about guns. The earlier the better and they won’t get in trouble.

    • wvbh17

      You are spot on!

  • Shawn O’Loughlin

    Great idea, should be implemented nation-wide. Oops, forgot, the Eddie Eagle program IS nation-wide. It’s free to schools, paid for by NRA members. You’re welcome.

  • huntingfamily

    I started shooting young since my Dad was an instructor for the goverment. Living in hunting country we have youngun’s hunting at 7 years old. Never to early to learn to respect a gun.

  • Patriot502003

    This is great news! Brings back memories of younger days with my Daisy Red Ryder BB Gun. By the time I was 7 I was well educated in firearms. This is Americana, By God!