Los Lunas school bans backpacks to beat pranks

LOS LUNAS, N.M. (KRQE) – The Los Lunas School District has taken action to stop outlandish senior pranks but some parents aren’t happy about it this year.

Los Lunas High School decided to ban backpacks this week, the last week of the school year.

LLHS Principal Dan Padilla told KRQE News 13 on Monday that he had to do something because kids “weren’t following the rules” and school security officials say they haven’t in years past.

The high school’s security director Desi Garcia says the rule was designed to keep kids safe and started a few years ago.

“It’s something that we’ve done every school year. Every school year, there are pranks that these kids try to do to leave their mark I guess on campus, but we expect it and we just… we just kind of roll with it, we don’t like that they want to do these kind of pranks that are going to cause damage or destruction,” said Garcia.

Garcia says backpacks were banned at the end of the 2012-13 school year as well and that parents were notified several days ago through the high school’s messaging network.

Some of the senior pranks at Los Lunas High have been pretty disruptive. Students tell us there was a food fight last week that covered the cafeteria.

In years past, silly string, shaving cream, water balloons filled with cooking oil and baby powder have been used to make a mess. Garcia says some students and staff even got hurt after slipping on oil.

In response, students have been forced to leave the backpacks at home or get them taken away at the door. The school says most students didn’t bring backpacks on Monday. A few students told News 13 that it was a “minor inconvenience” having to carry all of their books by hand.

However, some parents think it’s going too far. Michelle Smith says she’s upset because her kid needs a backpack by her side due to physical limitations.

“Do your job. Take the time and find the kids that were involved. Don’t punish everybody for something that’s going on in a limited range of students,” said Smith.

Smith says she spoke to the LLHS principal about her daughter’s situation, but the principal won’t budge. Garcia told News 13 on Friday otherwise, saying the high school does make exceptions for students needs.

School ends Thursday for the Los Lunas School District. The high school says it won’t allow backpacks until the beginning of the next school year.

Other parents told News 13 that their kids can deal with the no backpack rule, but still they don’t think it’s enough to stop the ongoing pranks. Students told News 13 that other pranks left a mess in the parking lot last week when seniors used things like animals and shopping cars to get to school on “anything but cars” day.

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