South Dakota became the first state in the U.S. to officially allow teachers to carry guns in the classroom on Friday, after Gov. Dennis Daugaard signed a bill into law that will allow individual school districts to autonomously decide on the matter.
Similar legislation has been proposed in about two dozen states, while a slew of other states including, Utah, Texas and Hawaii, either maintain a lack in official legal restrictions, or uphold certain provisions that make it possible for only some teachers to have guns in the classroom.
However, South Dakota is the now the first state since the Sandy Hook Elementary school shooting to specifically pen and authorize a bill that gives all teachers the ability to possess firearms in classrooms from kindergarten through 12th grade, Lauren Heintz, a research analyst at the National Conference of State Legislatures, told the New York Times.
The bill comes a day after Georgia lawmakers advanced legislation to end a ban on firearms in bars, churches and college classrooms that will now move to the Georgia state Senate for consideration.