NEISD Planning Clear Backpack Policy for Middle and High School Students

Junior Jessica Artelejo dons her clear backpack.

By Austin Cohea | Big Stick Editor |

The North East Independent School district sent out a message last week on their new security policy, which states students enrolled in NEISD middle and high schools must wear clear backpacks, will be subject to random checks with metal security wands, and during school hours, a buzz in system with electronically locked doors starting in the 2018-2019 school year.


Teachers will be able to unlock the doors using the proxy pads on the back of their I.D cards, which they already use for elevators and copy machines.

The district posted its security policy on social media, and students and parents, including junior Maia Smith, voiced their opinions. Some supported it, while Smith indicated the changes weren’t enough.

“I think it’s a way for them to come back at people pushing for stronger gun control and say ‘Hey look we’re doing something about it!’ without actually doing anything about it,” Smith said.

When asked what she would propose as an alternative to this solution, Smith said “The school district actively contacting members of Congress, inviting them to events within the district where students can voice their opinions, and involvement in the NSBA’s federal relations network with representation for the student body would be great.”

The policy, set to go into effect in August, does allow for NEISD to provideĀ backpacks to families that cannot afford them.

“The district will find the funds to supplement backpacks for people who can’t afford them, I don’t know where they’re going to allot that money within the district budget, but it won’t be at the campus level,” Principal Melvin Echard said.