New policy could mean clear bags at games, events at Wake County Public Schools

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Tuesday, January 23, 2024
WCPSS considers districtwide Clear Bag Policy at games, events
Wake County Public Schools Security Department worked with law enforcement and principles on the new policy.

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- The Wake County School Board is considering a districtwide bag policy and a WCPSS says one incident shined a light on the importance of such a safety measure.

Millbrook High School seniors can vividly remember last year, a male teen being arrested on campus for allegedly bringing an ar-15 weapon to a school basketball game. The next day, Raleigh Police was at the school and provided extra security.

"It's scary because it's right here, it's our school," said student Jay Trejo.

Another student questioned, "Why would you even come and put people in danger at a basketball game?"

Right now, individual schools can implement their own policy. Sanderson and Millbrook already had one, and Broughton implemented a clear bag policy for its football games.

WCPSS Security Department worked with law enforcement and principles on the new policy.

Clear bags, small wristlets, bags with necessary medical items, diaper bags, and other gear like blankets would be permitted. Things like fabric backpacks and duffle bags would be among the items prohibited.

Wake would be falling in line with what other districts are doing.

"We're seeing it in Durham County, we're seeing it I believe in Johnston County," said Wake County School Board Member Sam Hershey. "Given how our society is and what we kind of see and all the unfortunate things that happen at schools and can happen really anywhere, that it's just another layer of protection."

A survey done by the National Center for Education Statistics finds the percentage of students who say they've carried a weapon or on a school campus is decreasing, with just 3 percent of students surveyed saying they'd brought a weapon on a school campus in the timeframe studied.

The policy being considered states anyone attending a district event may be subject to personally being searched or their belongings.

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Wake Security says it will explore possibly using one of those wands to make sure nobody is bringing a weapon into an event.