WHS: No unsupervised kids at stadium
by Kellen Moore
WHS Principal Marshall Gasperson said upwards of 250 kids, including some in elementary school, are being dropped off at the football games without a parent or guardian and are interfering with others’ enjoyment.
They also are creating risky situations by walking out of the games after dark into situations that could be unsafe.
“It’s bordering on a safety issue,” Gasperson said.
Gasperson said most of the younger students don’t stay in the stands during the game but gather in groups in Jack Groce Stadium. He spoke of one elderly lady who was knocked over by a “flying fifth-grader” two weeks ago.
“They are becoming a nuisance to the patrons that are trying to enjoy the game,” he said.
Gasperson said concession sales also had dropped because people did not feel they could comfortably come out of the stands due to crowds around the concession area.
Superintendent David Kafitz said he had attended several recent football games and supported Gasperson’s request.
Kafitz said he plans to send a letter home to all K-8 parents and ask principals to follow up with an automated phone call next week as a reminder.
Gasperson said he planned to add signs before the next home game Sept. 21 indicating that non-high school students must be accompanied by an adult in the stadium.
Although no formal vote was
taken, several school board members spoke in support of the plan Monday.
“I don’t think that it is the responsibility of us to provide a day care,” board member Steve Combs said.
Board member Delora Hodges said she supported the policy but suggested making specific bleacher sections for K-8 schools to encourage the students to keep attending the games. She said such visits were important for middle school students as they prepare to transition to the high school.