17 students suspended after senior prank

bbashioum@demo-mo.comMay 20, 2013 

A senior prank resulted in 17 Belton High School students from participating in commencement exercises May 18.

May 14 was the last school day for seniors but the festivities turned sour after the district suspended the students for breaking and entering the high school during the overnight hours to carry out a senior prank.

The students were sent home Wednesday morning after the teens broke into the building sometime between 10:30 p.m. May 14 and 2:30 a.m. May 15 and trashed the building.

A handful of students gained access into the school through a ventilation system and then let the other participants in through a door.

Inside, the seniors painted windows with washable paint, threw confetti, party streamers, balloons and other items throughout the school.

After being alerted by police, Underwood arrived at the high school where he met Principal Fred Skretta and the police.

School employees arrived at the school early Wednesday to clean up the mess, and a district spokeswoman said the vandalism cost the district $600.

“I am thankful no one was hurt coming through the ceiling and no major destruction occurred,” Belton School District Superintendent Andrew Underwood said. “However, I am disappointed these individuals were a part of ransacking the high school. I hope for our students to show more pride in their school.”

Standard suspension disciplinary actions restricts students from participating in all school district activities.

“That is the punishment we give to all students that are suspended,” District Spokeswoman Kristin Beason said. “It’s not any different in this situation.”

The district is also considering pressing charges against at least five other non-district students who participated in the prank for breaking and entering, in addition to vandalism charges.

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