Wayland opts out of Senate Bill 11

PLAINVIEW – The Wayland Baptist University Board of Trustee voted unanimously to endorse the recommendation of Dr. Paul Armes to opt out of Senate Bill 11 which allows firearms to be carried on college campuses by licensed individuals.

Wayland will continue with its current policy that prohibits individuals from carrying firearms on campus. It does, however, allow students, faculty and staff to store firearms in their vehicles or, for Plainview campus students, in a designated safe.

Senate Bill 11, as passed by the 84th Legislature of the State of Texas, authorizes concealed handgun license or license to carry holders to carry a concealed handgun while on the campus of public or private colleges and universities. There is a provision that gives private universities three options based on the fact that private schools are located on private property, not state property. Private universities have the right to:

  1. Accept and incorporate the law in its entirety
  2. Restrict areas on campus in which concealed carry is permitted
  3. Continue with current policies

Armes said he and other members of the administration had polled, surveyed and/or conducted discussion sessions with faculty, staff and students at each of Wayland’s Texas campuses located in Plainview, Lubbock, Amarillo, Wichita Falls and San Antonio. He said while a small majority of traditional students on the Plainview campus were in favor of the new law, the overwhelming majority of non-traditional students, faculty and staff throughout the system were in favor of maintaining the current policy.

Armes said he made his recommendation based on the survey and poll results as well as the notion that there are too many unknown variables and liabilities that may come into play. He said, however, that there may be opportunity in the future to revisit the policy.

“We don’t have all the answers,” Armes told the Board of Trustees. “At some point in the future, if they will permit us to procure additional training for individuals who have licenses, you might look more favorably on some acceptance of the law. At this time the law doesn’t allow us to do that.”