There is a new mandate in place in many New Jersey school systems, Middlesex County being the most recent to join the movement requiring students to use clear backpacks for back to school.  Thank you for the effort, but there is a better way. 

I agree that we need to take simple steps to help with our kids’ safety in addition to facing the bigger issues causing gun violence, but are clear backpacks going to do that?  There is a more beneficial option out there and I want to bring it into the conversation. 

First, let me say that I commend the effort and commitment to transparency, but kids and visitors do have pockets and jackets too, so what’s next, clear pants?

A more useful backpack (although more expensive) is one that turns into a bulletproof shield and protects as much as it is transparent.  I knew the bulletproof shield bookbag existed but I did not know about this.  

The thought occurred to me that the perfect hybrid of ideas is the clear backpack with a bulletproof shield on the back and after looking into it, Superior Protection Professionals already have them available.  You can find them here. I know the criticism is going to be the cost and that is understandable however, we do fundraisers for much less important things throughout the school year, don't we?  This should be fundraiser number one.

I wanted to make you aware these products exist because although the schools mandating clear backpacks are kind enough to provide them, you are allowed to buy your own if you choose. Will the bullet protection in these backpacks be allowed because the bullet shield covers the back?  It is worth a call to your school to find out. 

There are many people that say that clear backpacks are just for optics and do not make our kids safer but to that, I say that it doesn’t hurt. As long as we don’t stop more important efforts like ensuring that schools have proper locking systems and a security protocol for visitors then I'm on board.  It is just clear to me (no pun intended) that a plastic bookbag can not deflect a bullet and sadly, we need it to.

Kelly Conklin from Toms River Superior Protection Professionals joined Lou and me on the Jersey Shore Morning Show. ICYMI, here was our chat and how to buy your bulletproof bookbag. 

  

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