UPDATE, Monday August 29th - The Twin Falls School District has just released the following statement.

The middle school leadership teams are also exploring the idea of letting students bring clear backpacks to help with carrying supplies and alleviating security concerns.

 

Friday, August 27th - The backpack policy at Robert Stuart Junior High and O'Leary Junior High in Twin Falls changed at the end of last year. Backpacks are no longer allowed in classrooms. This is causing a small stir among Twin Falls parents and students.

Students are complaining of being unable to carry their books, notebooks, calculators, etc. without a backpack to classrooms. One parent's specific complaint was that her child only weighed 65 pounds and her child's books weighed over 30 pounds. This makes the process of carrying books all day an issue.

Backpacks are currently allowed in Twin Falls High School and Canyon Ridge High School. Eva Craner, Community Relations Specialist for the Twin Falls School District, stated

Middle school students can bring their bags to school but must leave them in their lockers and not take them to class.

Craner also pointed out that backpacks were banned from classrooms due to the gun incident at Robert Stuart Junior High School last year. This incident involved a gun in a backpack. At that time, the staff made the decision to ban backpacks in classrooms as a safety measure.

The Twin Falls School District understands parents’ concerns and noted that there are a few things in place at the middle school level which should help students get their stuff between classes. In most classes, there is a set of books that students don’t take out of the classroom, so they wouldn’t be lugging around a giant science or math textbook around the hallways. Also, unlike our high schools, grade levels are consolidated at the middle school level. This means most classes a student will be attending in a day are in one section of the building which offers students less walking between classes with the materials they are carrying.

Should backpacks be allowed in our Twin Falls Junior High classrooms?