Monday, July 21, 2008

West Virginia adds Hunter Safety Course to School Curriculum

© By Othmar Vohringer

In a time when hunters look to the future with some justified concern about the continually declining overall hunter numbers we hear refreshing news from West Virginia.

On Aril 1st, 2008 Governor Joe Manchin (picture) signed Senate Bill 9 into effect. The bill introduces an elective hunter education program into the public school curriculum. West Virginia’s school students will have to wait to to sign up until next semester. The classes are offered over a two-week period during the school year in the 6th through 12th grades.

The legislation was passed late in the school year and school administrators still have to figure out how to implement the courses. Taking other legislation into consideration, such as the ban of any weapons from school properties.

The bill stipulates that the classes will be conducted by an instructor certified by the state Division of Natural Resources or who has other training necessary to conduct the program as determined by the state board.

The school boards and students welcome the new legislation that enables schools to teach hunter safety classes. This is nothing new, West Virginia used to have hunter education classes in the public school system many years ago. Veteran hunters still can remember when they took firearm safety courses during their high school years and are pleased to see this opportunity back in the schools again.

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Matt said...

This is good news for West Virginia students, and you have some great posts below. Glad to see you back!

Tom Sorenson said...

This is great news! Love to see a state allowing talk about hunting in their public schools. Even where I grew up in Idaho, even though most everyone hunts around here, there was a hush about it on school grounds among the teachers and stuff. I commend you, West Virginia!

By the way, Othmar - I just read your blog on HuntOnly - good stuff! I agree with your stance on public land hunting - it might take more work, but it's possible. There are places, if you're willing to hike your tail off, that you can get away from people on public land, too.

Othmar Vohringer said...

Thank you Matt and Tom for your visits and comments. It’s definitely a good idea to have hunter education courses at school because a lot more kinds are made aware of it that way.

Adam said...

That is great that West Virginia is doing that! It is great to introduce kids to hunting and fishing at an early age. Othmar we are glad to have you back!

SimplyOutdoors said...

I think this is great, and is very encouraging to here.

We have hunters education offered in many schools here in Michigan as well.

I think these programs will only help to encourage more kids to get involved in the outdoors.

Othmar Vohringer said...

Adam – Thanks for your kind words, I am glad to be back and blogging again.

Arthur – You’re absolutely right. When schools offer hunter education it is right there for all children to see. This increases the likelihood of a child taking the course that perhaps would not do it if it had to find out first where such courses are held.


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