STILLWATER, Minn. -- The instructor of a state-sponsored firearms safety class accidentally discharged a weapon in front of his students at a Minnesota church.

No one was hurt, and the bullet lodged in the wall of the cafeteria at Salem Lutheran Church School.

The incident, on April 11, was revealed when a 14-year-old student in the class told his father about it on the way home. The boy's father then called his brother, who is a county sheriff in Minnesota.

Stillwater police met the 76-year-old volunteer instructor at the school the following day. The man was "very apologetic ... for the foolish mistake" he had made, according to police reports.

"You gentlemen can't imagine the embarrassment I feel towards myself for what took place," he told police.

The Department of Natural Resources, which sponsors the course, is investigating the incident, said Mike Hammer, education programs coordinator for the department's enforcement division.

The accidental discharge apparently happened before the start of the 6:30 p.m. class. The instructor was showing another instructor how the safeties on a .45-caliber Colt 1911 worked. The other instructor told police that the man "used good muzzle control" at all times and "at no time was the barrel of the gun ever pointed towards anyone."

About eight other people were in the room at the time of the incident, police said.

The firearms safety class is required for people born after Dec. 31, 1979, before they can get a Minnesota hunting license; students must be at least 11 years old, Hammer said.

Whether the instructor, who has taught firearms safety since 2002, will continue to teach has not yet been determined, Hammer said.

"We will do an investigation of what took place, meet with him and make a determination at that time as to whether he continues to be a volunteer instructor with us," Hammer said. "He has not been formally suspended, (but) he has not come back to the classroom. He's pretty embarrassed."

Hammer said the magazine of the gun had been removed, but one round remained in the chamber. "If he had checked, it would have been a great demonstration," Hammer said. "He violated a safety rule and found out what happens when you do. There should be no live ammunition in the classroom. Period. Anytime you pick up a firearm, you check to make sure it's unloaded, and he did not, and it went off."

Bob Hutton, the father of the boy in the class, said he was concerned that parents of students in the class had not been informed of the incident.

There should have been a letter or a phone call to the parents in regards to this incident at least," Hutton said. "I certainly hope this guy does not teach another class."