Bulletproof Backpacks: New Trend at School?


Children wearing backpacks at school

Lizeth Santiago, Staff Writer

Events of school shootings in the United States have increased dramatically, leaving parents worried for their children’s safety. Parents are questioning if they should really send their children to school or consider homeschooling. This is where the idea of bulletproof backpacks come into place. With every new school year, parents want to protect their children when they are not at home. Shootings are happening in everyday places people go to shop or visit. 

Sales of guns have increased after every mass shooting–whether it be inside or outside of a school. Parents question the price they will pay for safety. Companies who sell backpacks filtered as “bulletproof” or “bullet resistant” use slogans and fear tactics to push sales. For example, “save your child from being the next victim,” or even, “save a life.” Small phrases can have an impact when it comes to life or death situations–something everyone is afraid of.

On average, one of these backpacks can cost between $100 to $500 and more. The Department of Justice clarified that they don’t officially test the backpacks themselves. Instead the company who is selling them  has separate staff to test the products.


Worker testing out bullet proof backpack.

There are bulletproof inserts that you put in the back of the backpack. For younger children, there are character designs like princesses or Disney characters. To make it educational, the company designs them with months of the year, days of the week, and shapes. The recent school shooters have not only used handguns but high powered rifles. Yes ,some backpacks can protect the individual from a handgun, but that’s it. If you want hard, ballistic inserts that have been tested, it can cost between $400-$500. These prices question how much parents are willing to spend for their kids’safety. The inserts only cover one part of the body, not the whole body–meaning the head, arms, hands, and legs are still exposed and this leaves the chance of still getting injured.

By buying these backpacks, it will bring the conversation of how to survive and what to do during a school shooting to each family buying them. Explaining what it is and the effects that can happen to their life, if a tragedy does happen. Giving that new information to a child who is still in elementary school is a topic that no parent wants to approach. But with no change from the government on gun laws, it leaves no choice but to question whether or not to buy the backpack.  Purchases of these backpacks will continue to increase, making money off of fear for the individuals they love.