As reported earlier, Senate Bill 11, the “Campus Carry” law, allows concealed handgun license holders to carry handguns on college and university campuses. (Individuals must be 21 years of age or older in order to qualify for a license.) The new law will take effect in August 2016 at universities and August 2017 at community colleges. The law includes a provision that allows public college and university presidents to designate some campus areas gun-free zones.
Private universities have the option to opt out of campus carry altogether and declare their entire campuses gun-free zones if they so chose. Public colleges and universities do not have that option. Private schools must make their policy statements public by August 1, 2016.
There are 38 private colleges and universities in Texas. As of January 20, 20 colleges have decided to ban handguns from campus altogether. Seventeen have not yet formulated a policy and one has failed to respond to inquiries.
While Texas now has an open carry law, open carry will not be allowed on campuses.