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(UVALDE, Texas) – Several school districts in Texas are requiring students to use see-through backpacks following last month’s fatal shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde.
The Ingleside Independent School District, near Corpus Christi, became one of the latest to announce the new policy this week, after its board unanimously approved the code policy update. district dress code to require see-through backpacks beginning in the 2022-23 school year.
“Safety is a top priority for Ingleside ISD and is at the forefront of concern for school districts across Texas and our country,” the district said in a statement Tuesday.
The policy should also help process students through metal detector lines on its branch campuses, the district said.
Several other school districts also have clear backpack policies in place following the May 24 shooting, in which 19 students and two teachers at Robb Elementary School were killed.
Harper ISD, about 90 miles northwest of San Antonio, announced earlier this month that it would implement a clear backpack policy for students starting in the fall “in light of the recent school shooting, and in an effort to do everything we can to increase safety for our students and staff.”
Two local businesses donated a backpack for every student in the district.
Greenville ISD, located about 45 miles northeast of the Dallas-Fort Worth metropolitan area, also said it will require see-through backpacks starting in the fall, among other security measures. The policy is a “common sense measure that is becoming increasingly commonplace at school and public events,” the district said.
Additional security measures announced this month include having a front access point for entry and requiring all classroom doors to remain locked at all times, the district said.
The new measures also came a month after a fake pipe bomb was discovered at the district high school. The school was evacuated and a minor was taken into custody following the incident, school officials said.
See-through backpacks have become common in the wake of school shootings. Several other school districts in Texas already require them among their safety measures.
Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida temporarily required its students to use see-through backpacks after a deadly 2018 shooting on campus. Some students questioned the effectiveness of the policy and raised privacy concerns at the time.
Oxford Community Schools in Michigan also demanded see-through backpacks after four students were shot and killed in a mass shooting at Oxford High School last year.
After the Uvalde massacre, in which the shooter entered the school through an unlocked door, Texas Governor Greg Abbott suggested schools conduct weekly door checks, among other security measures. He also asked state lawmakers to convene special legislative committees to make recommendations on school safety, among other things.
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