Editorial: The Backpack Rule Change
By Chelsea Fisher
In the class meetings that high school students attended on Thursday, August 17th, Dr. Short mentioned that there will be changes coming up with the regulations on backpacks.
The current policy for backpacks is that students are able to carry a backpack and a computer case; Dr. Short says that part of the problem is the fact that there is no size regulation. The biggest problem he mentions is student overcrowding: “The problem becomes when those backpacks become too unwieldy.” Student council is going to meet with Dr. Short to discuss whether or not the policies should be amended.
In my opinion, changes could go very wrong. With the five minutes that we are given in between classes we often have to navigate half of the school and push through over a thousand other students. Teachers often ask you things like “Why didn’t you go to the bathroom between classes?” or “Why can’t you go to your locker before class?” There’s simply not enough time. On paper, five minutes is a perfect amount of time. If you run your schedule with no one in the hallway then everything works out and you have plenty of time, but in real time you’re lucky if you have time to get a drink.
On the first day of school in 2014 there were 1504 students, the numbers have risen steadily over the past few years being 1,561 in 2015, 1,611 in 2016, and 1,638 on the first day of school this year, according to the high school main office.
With the growing amount of students at PHS there is also the issue of space: some students are “carrying something larger than the average freshman who walks through the door” Dr. Short jests.
Short also mentioned that there is a risk of not knowing what students are carrying in their bags. At some schools students are only allowed to carry backpacks if they are clear, to make sure that no one has anything dangerous in their bag. This is something we could try.
If all students agreed to carry smaller bags then there is a good chance that this problem could easily solved.
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