Wednesday, 25 April, 2018

Stoneman Douglas students return to school with stepped-up security, clear backpacks

Survivor's guilt for students who were absent during school shooting Clear backpacks handed out to students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School
Rosie Leonard | 05 April, 2018, 01:44

Another student tweeted a photo of her clear backpack that had nothing but a handwritten note inside which read: 'This bag contains everything politicians care about, besides money'.

Following the deaths of 17 people after 19-year-old gunman Nikolas Cruz entered the school and opened fire, hundreds of thousands have been protesting for tighter gun controls.

"Feminine hygiene products that we need, that we have to carry with us, we can't choose to be on our menstrual or not".

Classes have resumed following spring break and students walked in to a few changes, including free, clear backpacks provided by the district. "It's not helping", student Tori Sutton said.

Parkland students organized the March for Our Lives rally in Washington, D.C., March 24.

"It feels like being punished", student Isabelle Robinson told CNN. The school district is "exploring options" to begin using metal-detecting wands at entrances and potentially permanent metal detectors.

"I feel like the police there is helping us a little, but it's too overwhelming", Sutton said.

Clear backpacks may deter some from bringing weapons into school, but without metal detectors people can still hide them in folders or in between papers, junior Isabella Pfeiffer said.

Marjory Stoneman Douglas student Sarah Chadwick, one of the organizers behind the #NeverAgain movement, posted on Twitter Sunday that her school is "starting to feel like a prison".

"It is very hard to balance both convenience/privacy with safety/security; if there is more of one, the other often suffers, but I will do my best to balance the two", he wrote.

Media organizations, including the South Florida Sun Sentinel, are seeking the release of video from outside the school to show how law enforcement responded to the scene of an active shooter.

In addition to displaying the orange tag, senior Carmen Lo stuffed a sign into her backpack that read "this backpack is probably worth more than my life".

Nugent also said Hogg and the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School students are "not very educated" and "wouldn't know an AR-15 from a pterodactyl". These include requiring all students and staff to wear ID badges and locking classroom doors "at all times", according to a March 21 letter to parents from Broward Schools Superintendent Robert Runcie. He was arrested by authorities and is now being held at the Broward County jail in Fort Lauderdale on $500,000 bail - the same place his brother, Nikolas, is awaiting trial for the alleged perpetration of the February 14 massacre.

On Monday, many students entered the campus carrying plastic grocery bags containing their books and other belongings.

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