CCW and Carrying In A School Zone in California

If you have been issued a CCW in California are you able to carry in a school zone (The 1,000 feet around a school)?

I know you are not able to carry on school property whether it is public or private.

I am hoping for an answer from the attorney vs. everyone’s opinion.

Then you need to talk with an attorney.


I’m not an attorney and I do not live in California… so this is my “everyone’s opinion” based on California’s Gun Laws:

Having CCW you are NOT ALLOWED to posses a firearm in a school zone.
School zone is defined as an area within a distance of 1,000 feet from the grounds of the public or private school.

So it doesn’t actually mean 1,000 feet around the school. It is distance of 1,000 feet from school’s property (parking lots, sport fields, etc).
I think there are exceptions, fe. if your residence or business is within these 1,000 feet.

:point_right: Anyway… it’s always better to ask attorney before you start carrying close to any school. :point_left:


You can find the latest concealed carry laws on our Reciprocity Map. Here’s a link to the California information:

which states:
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*“Grades K through 12 school grounds although unloaded handguns in locked containers or within the locked trunk of a motor vehicle are allowed [however California permitholders can carry off school property but within school zones (within a distance of 1,000 feet from the grounds of the public or private school)]”

That is the law as it stands today 3/2/21. Please check your laws frequently as laws can change. The USCCA Reciprocity Map is updated with changes on a daily basis as needed.

Hope that helps, @Jason143!

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Thanks for pointing to that page. It has all the information.

To clarify [however California permitholders can carry off school property but within school zones (within a distance of 1,000 feet from the grounds of the public or private school)] means that someone CAN carry in school zones who have a CCW.

In a school zone, yes. On school property, no.

In Wisconsin, we have school zone signs that signify the beginning/ending of a school zone. But I haven’t seen a school property sign… :thinking: I’ll look closer the next time I’m passing a school.

Sounds good.

I would guess the sidewalk is not a part of the the school property.

We do have school zone signs but I only thought they were being used as a part of the speed limit.


The federal gun free school zone does not apply to persons licensed to carry a firearm off the property but within a 1000 feet. The 1000 feet limitation is from any of the schools property lines. State law would determine whether a CCL holder whether a firearm can be on the property or left in a vehicle.
One thing to consider in Constitutional Carry states is that you would be violating the federal law if you do not have a CCL within 1000 feet of a school.
You do need to be careful with respect to the property line. Depending on how the deed is written, I have seen property lines defined as including the sidewalk and even including the street to the middle of the street with easements for the use of the property for the road.


The closest school has many houses within 1,000 feet of the building and many more within 1,000 feet of the property line. I realize that one’s home trumps the location with respect to the school property, but there is a lot of “common area,” streets, and sidewalks also within 1,000 feet of the school’s property line.

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@MikeBKY Thanks for clarifying.

How do I find out what is considered school property?

If you live across from a school and walk dogs it is good to know if you are doing something wrong or not.

The only way to really know is by a survey which is somewhere between impractical and impossible. But a survey is the only definitive way.
From a practical sense, I would assume from the curb of the schools property is the boundary.