GOOSE CREEK, SC (WCSC) - Fans who attend Goose Creek High School home football games will see a slight change come Friday when they walk through the gates.
The Berkeley County School District is testing out a new "Clear Bag or No Bag" entry procedure for Gator football games.
"This is something we've been discussing for a while and this was just the best time to implement it," said district Safety and Security Coordinator Tim Knight.
You've seen it at NFL games starting in 2013, and most college as of last year – all going clear!
The Safety and Security Office in the district looked at procedures from area colleges to develop its own procedure for football games.
"We have had some unfortunate events [in the area]," Knight said.
Knight said safety is the number one concern in school and also at school events.
"I guess I can understand it from a safety perspective," said Eddie Croft, who supports the procedure. "You just don't know these days, especially with what just happened in Vegas, and people can bring anything to a game."
Starting Friday, October 6, at the game versus Fort Dorchester High School, each ticketed fan can carry one clear tote bag, not to exceed 12" x 6" x 12" and a small clutch or wallet can be included in the clear tote if it does not exceed 4.5" x 6.5", roughly the size of a large index card. District officials said a clear bag is not required to carry small items such as keys, wallets, cell phones, credit cards, cash, etc., which should be carried in a pocket.
"We do understand that some people will have to show up with medically necessary items in bags that aren't clear," Knight said. "That's fine, but just understand that those bags will be subject to search."
Items which are prohibited include weapons, drugs, alcohol, tobacco and electronic cigarettes.
District officials have already reached out to visiting schools on the schedule to let them know about the new measure.
"We wanted to allow the other schools time to get that message out to their parents and fans to let them know what we're going to start Friday night," Knight said.
Goose Creek High School is serving as the test site for this procedure because it's the largest high school in the district, with nearly 2,000 students.
Knight said the hope is to make this permanent at every high school football game district-wide next year.
"There's so much that's been going on, so yeah I think it's a great idea," said Rosalie Raney, whose granddaughter attends GCHS. "Try to keep everyone as safe as possible."
"We commend and applaud Berkeley County School District for their willingness to pilot a 'Clear Bag or No Bag' entry procedure and look forward to working alongside their leaders to continue to improve safety measures at all district schools and facilities," said Berkeley County Sheriff Duane Lewis. "It is important that we consider proactive measures and continue to explore all options available to use to ensure the safety of the students, families, and communities of Berkeley County."
Any parents who have concerns about the measure are encouraged to contact the district or the school.