After repeated gun-related incidents at an Idaho middle school, parents pleaded with the school district for the installation of metal detectors and anti-bullying programs as preventive measures.
Instead, the district chose to ban backpacks.
Last week, a firearm was reportedly found inside an emotionally struggling 13-year-old girl's backpack at Rigby Middle School.
East Idaho News confirmed the school went on lockdown after the gun was found and the student was taken into custody without incident. No shots were fired, and no one was injured.
In response, Jefferson School District 251 decided a ban on backpacks in the district's schools would be the best course of action for the time being.
Jefferson School District Superintendent Chad Martin wrote in a statement:
"Effective immediately, backpacks will no longer be allowed at Rigby Middle School, Farnsworth Middle School, and both Rigby and Jefferson High Schools."
Students were left with no choice but to get creative in lugging around their books between classes.
"Threats were made and it was brought to their attention a week prior."
"They suspended one person but didn't look into another person (who) … said something along the lines that she planned stuff and wrote it down in her notebook."
innovation at its finest #iwantmybackpack #rigbyhighschool
not even for spirit week #rigbyhighschool
People weighed in accordingly to how students are reacting in the aftermath of traumatic incidents at their school.
"Our school ended up banning backpacks, so we had to improvise a bit," read the caption for another clip, which showed students repurposing shopping carts and strollers.
Ngl some of you are insanely creative #rigby #shooting #fyp #rigbyhighschool
This clip featured a pet cage being carried around by a student.
#greenscreenvideo #rigby #high #school #foryou #funny #gnz
While students managed to find levity, the backpack ban did little to pacify parents.
"Removing backpacks is not a solution. It's a knee-jerk reaction," wrote Megan Humble—who is advocating for the installation of metal detectors at the school.
Humble wrote in a Facebook post:
"It's like slapping a bandaid in a severed artery and hoping it stops the bleeding. How does removing backpacks solve this?"
"You're telling me these kids can't walk in with a gun on their person? You're telling me that oversized everything in style that a kid couldn't walk in with a weapon just because they don't have a backpack? Give me a break."
"There's an established pattern now, and one that I'm personally not ok with."Humble added the school refused to be proactive after the May 6 shooting and is now being "reactive which will not get things done."