Florida school selling bulletproof backpack inserts for active shooter situations

Florida school selling bulletproof backpack inserts for active shooter situations
Posted at 10:04 AM, Nov 13, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-13 10:04:41-05

We're used to seeing schools sell T-shirts or candy bars, but one private school in Miami now has bulletproof backpack inserts up for sale.

Florida Christian School has placed an order form for the $120 panels on its website to add "another level of protection ... in the event of an active shooter," CNN reports.

"The teachers are trained to instruct the students to use their backpacks as a shield to protect themselves," Dean of Students George Gulla told CNN in an email.

It's indicative of a year peppered with tragic mass shootings, including the deadliest ever in modern American history at a music festival in Las Vegas in October and last week's mass shooting at a church in Sutherland Springs, Texas.

John Matarese said Kevlar-lined backpacks surged in popularity after the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting in December 2012, when 26 people, including 20 children, were gunned down by 20-year-old Adam Lanza.

"Some parents' groups say this is going overboard, adding children would not be able to get to their backpacks in time to protect themselves from a school gunman, especially if the backpack was in their locker," Matarese wrote. "But other families feel any protection is better than none in our schools right now."

School security expert Kenneth Trump told CNN that bulletproof backpacks are too shallow of a solution to a complex problem.

"The first and best line of defense is a well-trained staff and student body," Trump said. "If you need a bulletproof backpack, don't you need a bulletproof front pack, headgear, and bulletproofing the rest of your body down to your toes?"