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Students brought guns, knives, or other weapons to Minnesota schools at least 870 times last year, a state study of reported incidents shows.

More than half of those cases involved knives, and about 20 percent included firearms or look-alike guns, according to the report released this month by the state education department's office of community collaboration.

More than 140 of the state's 381 school districts reported at least one weapons incident.

The study was the first of its kind in the state. A new Minnesota law requires that districts report all incidents involving dangerous weapons to the education department twice a year.

About a third of the violations earned students suspensions for up to five days. About 20 percent of the students--who were primarily between the ages of 11 and 16--were transferred or expelled, the report says.

But those numbers were higher for the 65 cases involving firearms. About 52 percent of those students were forced to leave their schools or attend another one.

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