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Our View: Senior pranks not worth the trouble

Published: Friday, May 16, 2014 5:30 a.m. CDT

We would ask what’s in the water at Jacobs High School, but we got an answer to that this past week: baby oil, dish soap and laundry soap.

Last week, an unspecified amount of students during a transition period at the school proceeded to dump several gallons of water, baby oil, dish soap and laundry soap throughout an upstairs hallway creating “slick conditions,” District 300 said in a statement.

While the mess was cleaned up, students and staff had to stay in their classrooms.

Since then, eight students who participated were rounded up and still might be allowed to participate in graduation ceremonies, provided they write a letter to the school promising to behave themselves at graduation.

Also, an associate principal, clearly in jest, suggested a school resource officer “waterboard” students to solve a mystery of who was stealing toilet paper from the restrooms. Joking or not, there are words you don’t use in a work email when talking about disciplining students. “Waterboarding” is one of them.

Some folks on our Facebook page argued this week that school pranks are a time-honored tradition. We would argue some traditions need to go away, and pranks would qualify. School pranks are mostly unoriginal. We’ve all heard about three farm animals being let loose, with numbers 1, 2 and 4 painted on them, same with messing up a classroom or hallway, pulling the fire alarm or streaking. Boring, cliché, and sometimes dangerous. What’s the point?

We’re clearly not endorsing school pranks here, but if students insist on going through with one, they should make sure the prank is harmless and no one can get hurt. Actions have consequences, and be wary of the potential long-lasting effects of what you might think is an innocent action.

That’s a lesson students – and administrators – should keep in mind regardless of the time of year.

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