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The Student News Site of Waterloo West High School

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EFFECTIVE IMMEDIATELY: Clear bags only allowed at Memorial Stadium

Photo Credits: Waterloo Community Schools

Waterloo Community Schools is now requiring that spectators carry clear bags at Memorial Stadium. The stadium is home to Football games, Soccer games, and Track meets for West High. This new policy is in place because of an incident at the recent East vs. West Football game where a spectator brought a gun into the stadium.

This new policy puts many people in difficult situations because a lot of stores don’t sell clear bags on short notice. This means they would have to buy them online which can typically be more expensive.

Amongst Wahawk fans, clear bags are seen to have more negative impacts than positive. Clear bags tend to have small amounts of storage compared to other bags. There is also less privacy when it comes to clear bags. People could see what you have in them such as a wallet or personal items. Some people also feel it is an invasion of privacy especially for women who might be carrying feminine products in their bags. Others also point out the fact that they don’t necessarily have to make spectators use clear bags, but instead they could have someone check the bags before they go inside to make sure they don’t have any weapons on them.

The current president of the Waterloo Community Schools Board of Education, Sue Flynn, shared that “The safety and well-being of our students are our top priorities. We take this responsibility seriously, and we’re committed to creating a secure environment where our students and fans can enjoy the game.

Spectators were curious as to why they didn’t start this policy at the beginning of the year and are just starting now. Flynn shared “We started the Clear Bag policy at Memorial Stadium after consulting with our SROs and other high schools and venues that have implemented a Clear Bag Policy. We believe it will further enhance our safety efforts.

Flynn emphasized the importance of prioritizing safety at events and within our schools. “Waterloo Schools has a comprehensive, high-quality Emergency Operations Plan that provides the basis for helping to create and maintain a safe and positive learning environment for our students and staff.  Some of the items included in our Emergency Operations Plan include School Resource Officers employed in all of our middle and high schools and shared SROs at our elementary schools. Classroom and school-wide safety drills are performed regularly to help keep us prepared for a variety of emergencies. All of our schools have a designated single entry point for all school visitors and guests with all other exterior doors locked throughout the school day. Video surveillance cameras are used in all of our buildings. Vape Detectors are in use at our high schools to promote healthy lifestyles. Campus Safety Monitors are in all of our high schools and we have added Campus Safety Monitors at our middle schools. All of our buildings will be adding increased safety measures through the Safe Schools initiative.”

Even though clear bags may not be seen as convenient for all spectators, it is a step towards prioritizing safety, which is what matters most.

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About the Contributor
Ally Knight, Reporter
(She/her) Ally Knight is a Senior at West High and this is her second year on the Wahawk Insider staff. Outside of Wahawk Insider, she is on the varsity cheer squad for football and wrestling. You can often see her going on runs with her dog, shopping with friends, or taking a nap!
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