COLUMBUS, Ga. (WRBL) – Officials at Jordan High School in Columbus say bookbags are no longer allowed on campus, after a student brought a gun to school earlier this week.

Starting Monday, August 15th any student who brings a bookbag will have to keep it in the front office until their parent picks it up. While some students and parents support the decision, others say it won’t get to the root of the problem.

A grandmother of a Jordan High student, Sheila Tolbert, tells WRBL her number one priority is the safety of her grandchild.

“It goes back and forth because of the safety. You know, we have to protect all our children, our teachers, our staff and everyone. But if there’s a disturbance within the boundaries of the school, we have to know what’s accessible, what’s inside.”

Shelia Tolbert – Grandmother of Jordan High School Student

Some students suggested clear or mesh backpacks as an alternative to a total backpack ban.

“Things can be smuggled and brought on the school campus, even though book bags are not allowed. So it does not raise or lower my safety concerns for the school. But it also just makes me think and sit back and wonder what is really going on in my school. I do love it and we are a great school and we do offer a lot of things and there are a lot of great people here at Jordan. So we can’t just let a few spoil apples rotten the whole tree.”

Jamison Baker – 12th grade student at Jordan High School

Students expressed their frustration with having to carry all of their books and school materials. Many say they feel they are being punished.

School officials say athletes may still bring their equipment bags and leave them in the gym prior to the school day. Exceptions will also be made for students with documented medical issues that have been approved by the principal.

The backpack ban only pertains to Jordan High at this time. It is not Muscogee County School District wide.
They have left the decision up to school principals on school by school basis.