Parkland students will now carry clear backpacks, one of a number of new safety measures
After last month’s mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, officials are trying to find ways to keep students safer on campus and to prevent another tragedy from happening. The latest measure being implemented? Clear backpacks.
According to the New York Times, after MSD’s upcoming spring break, students returning to school will have to carry a clear backpack. The security measure comes after the brother of Parkland shooter Nikolas Cruz was discovered trespassing on the school’s campus this week and after two MSD students were caught carrying knives at school. Another student made threats on Snapchat. All three were arrested.
The change was announced in a letter to parents by superintendent Robert W. Runcie. The school’s spring break is next week, and after that, the clear backpack rule stands. The school will provide one to any student in need.
Other new security changes include the proposed use of metal detector wands and eventually, the possibility of permanent metal detectors at the school’s entrances. Both students and staff will be given identification badges they’ll have to wear as long as they’re at the school. Surveillance camera upgrades and reevaluating “code red” active shooter drills are also being discussed. By 2019, all schools in the district will have single points of entry and arguably, it’s the only proposed measure that might make an actual difference in student safety.
It’s not really clear how a see-through backpack would’ve stopped the shooter at Marjory Stoneman Douglas, who stormed the school carrying an AR-15 that most certainly wouldn’t have fit in any regular backpack to begin with. If someone wants to shoot up a school, a clear backpack certainly won’t act as a deterrent. Hell, a knife or hand gun could even be smuggled in someone’s clothes or a small makeup bag. It’s as though the powers that be are trying everything they can think of except the one thing that will actually make a real difference.
Better gun control.
At least the kids understand it, even as the adults stumble and flail to find the only obvious solution.
Great. Because clear backpacks are gonna fix everything. I appreciate the attempt, but I’d rather have common since gun laws than a clear backpack.
— Lauren Hogg (@lauren_hoggs) March 21, 2018
Clear backpacks don't do anything except make us look stupid. We want to be safe, not uncomfortable. The only thing that can really have an impact on our safety is gun control
— Carly Novell (@car_nove) March 21, 2018
Enforcing students to wear clear backpacks is simply like putting a band-aid on a broken bone
— natasha #NeverAgain (@sighnatasha) March 22, 2018
I know having clear backpacks will help with security, but now all my privacy will be gone. I wish it didn’t come to this. #StonemanDouglas #DouglasStrong #MSDStrong #MarchForOurLives #GreatMillsHighSchool #NeverAgain
— lizzie (@Lizziemcnichol) March 22, 2018
well we already have clear backpacks at our school – a boy still managed to bring a knife and bullets so yeah. If they want to commit a crime, THEY WILL FIND A WAY. This is not always effective just saying. https://t.co/PLJa489NZd
— therealkenidrawoods (@KenidraRWoods_) March 22, 2018
Even Runcie admitted in a recent interview that he doesn’t think metal detectors will be of much help saying, “Someone is not going to go through a metal detector with an AR-15.” He also noted the logistical challenges involved and the fact that the detectors would not make the schools in the district very welcoming to students. To any sane person, there’s only one way to truly make students safer at school.
s/o to America for making my school seem like jail now because legislators don’t have common sense gun reform on their agendas https://t.co/MJZFeaeiSa
— Kyra Parrow (@longlivekcx) March 21, 2018