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Houston County Schools moves to ban all backpacks, large bags at stadium events

The reason for the change was not immediately clear

HOUSTON COUNTY, Ga. — If you’re planning on attending a football game or other stadium event in Houston County, you’re going to need to leave a backpack or large bag at home.

The district announced Thursday evening that neither of those two items will be allowed at Freedom Field, Herb St. John Stadium, or McConnell-Talbert Stadium effective Friday, Sept. 10.

In a graphic shared to the district’s Facebook page, they say all items are subject to inspections by security.

What you can bring: one small purse, a camera or binoculars without a case, a medical bag, a blanket, a stadium seat, or a diaper bag if you have an age-appropriate child with you.

What you cannot bring: large purse, backpack, fanny pack, sling bag, camera bag or binocular case, duffel bag, mesh bag, clear bag, or briefcase.

It was not immediately clear what prompted this decision by the school district. When we asked them about the change in policy, they said this:

"Safety is our number one priority. This is a proactive measure to make all of our games safer. This change is in closer alignment with what you find in other high school and college stadiums. By not allowing bags, entry into games can be expedited without causing a backup while bags are individually checked.

This weekend we will host games where we expect a large number of fans in attendance. Those fans deserve to be in a safe, fan-friendly environment. This is a procedure that other stadiums have had in place for years, and is one that we should have considered sooner. This is a widely accepted best practice that discourages someone from bringing unwanted items such as alcohol, weapons, outside food and drink, etc. This change to our procedures applies to all games held in our stadiums moving forward."

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