New Jersey High School Bans Non-Clear Backpacks

As a means of added security against a potential threat, South River High School students will be required to carry their belongings in a clear backpack.

New Jersey High School Bans Non-Clear Backpacks

If students do not wish to use clear backpacks, they are allowed to carry their belongings by hand throughout the day.

Students at South River High School in New Jersey are now required to use only clear backpacks while in the hallways.

According to a letter on the school’s website, the decision is to “help ensure the safety of our entire school,” reports NJ 101.5.

If students wish to continue using their regular backpacks, they will have to keep it in their locker and carry their belongings in a clear backpack throughout the day.

Students will be able to buy the see-through backpacks on the first day of school for $12. Those who can’t afford it can see the guidance counselor for further help.

“We do not claim that there is any one approach, procedure, or solution to address every potential security risk, but feel that safety and security are priority areas that require continuous attention and effort on the part of our school district,” Superintendent Sylvia Zircher said.

Some students are not happy with the new rule and believe it is a violation of their privacy.

Saleem Nurallah posted an online petition that said not being able to wear a regular backpack makes him feel like a “prisoner in our high school.”

Female students are concerned that “girls have to carry around feminine hygiene products and other stuff…and we don’t want other people to see and it’s none of their business.”

One parent, Shortrese Martin, told CBS New York that he believes students will still find a way to bring whatever they want into the building.

Zircher said students still have the options, like not using the clear backpacks and carrying their belongings instead.

Bulletproof backpacks have also grown in popularity as shootings increase across the nation. These backpacks have bulletproof inserts that are said to be able to stop multiple bullet rounds.

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About the Author


Katie Malafronte is Campus Safety's Web Editor. She graduated from the University of Rhode Island in 2017 with a Bachelor's Degree in Communication Studies and a minor in Writing & Rhetoric. Katie has been CS's Web Editor since 2018.

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