SOUTH KINGSTOWN, R.I. (AP) — Rhode Island education officials have approved allowing the state's public higher education institutions to arm campus police.

The state Board of Education voted Thursday at a meeting at the University of Rhode Island.

The proposal leaves the decision to arm police to leaders at URI, the Community College of Rhode Island and Rhode Island College. Rhode Island was the only state that prohibited public university police from carrying firearms.

URI President David Dooley supports arming university officers. CCRI does not plan to arm its officers. Leaders at RIC have not yet decided.

Calls to arm campus police got a boost after reports of a gunman in a university building last month. No gun or shooter was found, but supporters of arming campus police say the incident highlighted security weaknesses.

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