COVID-19 has changed many things this year including students’ ability to carry backpacks in school to slow the spread of germs. Although backpacks have not been allowed at ALHS, there is a list of reasons that are beneficial to our students, staff and community.
Backpacks have made our classrooms cleaner. After students are done using their supplies, they put it all back in their backpacks instead of on the floor, which makes classrooms dirty. There has been less work for custodians and teachers, whose jobs have been changed this year and now include sanitizing the schools for student safety during a pandemic. This minor change allows staff to focus on student academics rather than cleaning.
Students are more organized and don’t forget as much homework because it all is in their backpack. Since students are bringing them everywhere, they aren’t forgetting their notebooks or folders in their lockers, or even forgetting assignments that they left at home.
Backpacks are more convenient for students throughout the whole day. They have all of their supplies with them, which helps there be a lesser demand for school supplies from teachers and reduces trips to their lockers which allows them more academic minutes in class.
However, some people are hesitant about students carrying backpacks for safety reasons. According to the Truth Initiative website, 27.5% of high schoolers used e-cigarettes in 2019. In 2020, the number dropped down to 19.6%. Schools have been more strict on the use of e-cigarettes. Because of the existence of pockets, allowing students to wear backpacks will not increase the number of students who attempt to vape while in school.
In conclusion, the benefits of backpacks for students outweigh safety concerns. ALHS should continue allowing backpacks in the classroom for years to come.