Two school districts and a Florida school have banned backpacks due to gun concerns, according to local news channels.
The Flint Board of Education in Michigan and Southwest Independent School District near San Antonio, Texas, have banned backpacks after concerns about bringing in firearms, according to the New York Post and KSAT. In Marion County, Florida, backpacks have been banned in one school after a student brought an airsoft gun to school, reported Fox 35 Orlando.
Michigan school district bans all backpacks over gun concerns https://t.co/8VrYXYGvpM pic.twitter.com/LRrFcT2ozj
— New York Post (@nypost) May 2, 2023
“Across the country, we have seen an increase in threatening behavior and contraband, including weapons, being brought into schools at all levels,” said Flint Superintendent Kevelin Jones in a policy update to parents that was provided to the Daily Caller News Foundation. “Backpacks make it easier for students to hide weapons, which can be disassembled and harder to identify or hidden in pockets, inside books or under other items,”Jones said. (RELATED: Karine Jean-Pierre Refuses To Say If Biden Supports Armed Security At Schools)
Last month, Flint Southwestern Classical Academy went on lockdown and closed the next day after receiving a threat, according to MLive News. “That is just one incident of several that we have had this year around students bringing weapons into our buildings in backpacks,” Director of Student Services Ernest Steward said.
In Florida, an automatic message went out to parents on Monday night informing them that a first grader had brought an airsoft gun to school, and that they were implementing a backpack ban due to safety concerns, Fox 35 reported.
“It’s not the object that was the problem, it’s that it was so easy to get it there,” said Kristin Katich, a parent, to Fox 35. ‘The problem is that it would be equally as easy to get a real weapon there.”
Katish also mentioned she decided to pull her daughter out of school as a result, because the incident frightened the child. This was the third threatening incident this year, according to Fox 35, but details regarding the other two incidents have not have not been made available.
“The procedure to which you are referring is a school-based decision made by one of our principals for her campus only starting today and continuing through the end of this school year (May 26),” Marion County Schools Director of Public Relations Kevin Christian told the Daily Caller News Foundation. “This is not a district-wide decision, though we have made similar decisions in the past based on student behavior.”
In San Antonio, Texas, a newsletter was published stating that the ban on backpacks was “necessary to reduce the risk of dangerous items being brought onto campus.”
“As we approach the end of the school year, we have noticed an increase in fake social media threats at schools across the city,” said Chief Communications Officer, Jenny Collier to DCNF. “As an added safety measure and to reduce any potential distractions and concerns during the last few weeks of school, backpacks, sling bags, messenger bags, and purses will not be allowed on any district campus starting Monday, May 8,” Collier said.
This article has been updated.
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