Backpacks no longer allowed at Ohio high school

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NILES, OH (WKBN) – Niles McKinley High School is banning backpacks, effective immediately, in an effort to prevent gun violence.

Students will still be able to carry around small purses or lunch boxes.

The school board said it made this decision “to make every student feel safe.”

It comes just a day after the district removed a student from class after that student was heard talking about school shootings.

Police investigated the incident and found there was no threat to the schools.

This isn’t the first time backpacks have been banned, though. Last year, students weren’t able to carry them following a bomb threat.

Sophomore Matthew Price said it’s a bit of an inconvenience, but it’s worth it.

“Yeah, I say I feel pretty safe in school.”

He said he understands why the board made the decision and is heartbroken over the tragedy in Florida.

“It’s just crazy, all this stuff happening. I don’t even want to think about it. It’s sickening, really.”

One of the big concerns is how quickly students will be able to get to and from class and their buses at the end of the day without backpacks.

School officials said they’ve talked with both the teachers and bus drivers about kids getting extra time to switch books and get to the buses.

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