Lexington-Richland School District Five will implement a clear bag requirement at all sporting events, beginning this fall.

The new requirement, which was detailed at the June 10 School Board meeting, will be added to a list of safety measures that were implemented last fall and were revised for winter and spring athletic events. Approved bags will include:

  • Clear Tote Bag: plastic, vinyl or PVC and do not exceed 12” x 6”x 12”.
  • One-gallon clear plastic freezer bag (Ziploc bag or similar).
  • Small clutch bags no larger than 4.5″ x 6.5″ — approximately the size of a hand, with or without a handle or strap.

“Safety and security are high priorities in our district,” said Dr. Michael Harris, chief planning and administrative officer for School District Five. “We’ve revisited our safety measures each season to make changes where needed and do all that we can to ensure the safety of our students-athletes and spectators at games. The new clear bag requirement is an administrative action we will implement at varsity and sub-varsity athletic events, and we will continue to monitor and review our safety measures moving forward.”

Under the new requirement, bags not allowed include: purses, bags, or containers larger than a small clutch, backpacks, binoculars cases, briefcases, camera bags, cinch bags, coolers, diaper bags, fanny packs, grocery/trash bags, luggage of any kind, mesh bags, and tinted plastic bags. Officials will make exceptions for bags containing necessary medical items following entrance inspections. Keys, cell phones, diapers and other belongings should be placed in clear bags or other approved clutch bags.

For fall varsity events, the new clear bag requirement will be added to a list of safety measures. Among the measures for fall varsity events:

  • The district will utilize metal detectors to screen spectators at varsity athletic events at Chapin, Dutch Fork and Irmo high schools.
  • Bags (including clear bags) also will be subject to searches at designated entry points, in line with state statute permitting “reasonable search” of any person entering school premises.
  • Admission will be charged throughout the duration of games.
  • All students 8th grade or younger are required to attend games with parents or guardians.
  • School Resource Officers also will travel with teams at away games.

“We take safety very seriously,” said School District Five Superintendent Dr. Christina Melton. “We have continued to listen to feedback and partner closely with law enforcement to explore and implement safety measures that help us protect our students and families. The new clear bag requirement is another important step.”

The district will announce safety measures for winter and spring athletic events during the 2019-2020 school year. For more information on School District Five safety measures, visit www.lexrich5.org/safety

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