WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senators Thom Tillis, John Cornyn (R-TX), and Kyrsten Sinema (I-AZ)recently introduced the Protecting Hunting Heritage and Education Act, legislation to ensure that students continue to have access to educational enrichment programs and activities such as archery and hunting safety education under the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act (BSCA).
“The Bipartisan Safer Communities Act was a good faith effort to provide historic funding for mental health, harden schools across the country, and strengthen existing gun safety laws while protecting the constitutional rights of every American,” said Senator Tillis. “The Biden Administration’s partisan interpretation of BSCA to eliminate hunting education in schools is a slap in the face to millions of Americans, particularly in rural areas, and discourages bipartisan cooperation in Congress. Hunting education programs have wide bipartisan support in Congress, and I encourage my colleagues to quickly pass this legislation to ensure gun-grabbing Biden officials have no room for misinterpretation.”
The Protecting Hunting Heritage and Education Act would amend the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA) to ensure that the prohibition of use of federal education funds for certain weapons does not apply to the use of such weapons in extracurricular programs such as archery, hunting, other shooting sports, or culinary arts.
The legislation builds on a recent letter Senator Tillis led with 17 of his Senate colleagues urging U.S. Department of Education Secretary Miguel Cardona to implement the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act as Congress intended and restore federal funding for educational activities like hunting and archery. Senator Tillis also led a letter with 16 of his Senate colleagues urging the leadership of the Senate Committee on Appropriations to clarify that school districts may continue to use their ESEA funding to provide educational enrichment programs and activities, including hunting, outdoor, archery, and culinary education, in the FY24 Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies appropriations bill.