Students banned from graduation after prank

June 6, 2012 6:23:37 AM PDT
Fifteen Southern Lee High School seniors were banned from attending their own graduation this week, as punishment for performing -- what they called -- a "senior prank."

The prank happened last Tuesday when a group of students were caught allegedly trespassing by law enforcement.

Southern Lee High School officials said the students had planned to vandalize the school's campus, but were sent home with a stern warning that a prank could lead them to becoming barred from graduation.

However, officials said later that same evening 15 students decided to regroup and instead target Lee County High School with the same intention, but one student strayed from the original plan.

"It was just chalk," Southern Lee High School senior Bianca Cline said. "All we did was chalk and toilet paper. And then one person decided to bring spray paint.

Some students said the school would let them go free, if they indentified the spray painters. However, they said after the student fessed up to the spray paint, they all still got in trouble.

"When everybody confessed, they changed the whole story," parent Fabiana Cline said.

Parents said school officials have the ability to assign other punishments instead of the ban.

"They're all willing to do community service, they're willing to work at the PTA thrift store, they're willing to clean the parking lot at both schools," parent Sadie Strunks said. "They're willing to do whatever they need to do. They just want to walk."

"This is a milestone in their life that they're never going to get back," Fabiana Cline added.

However, Southern Lee High School officials said they warned the students about the punishment.

Southern Lee High School graduation is scheduled for Thursday and Lee County High's scheduled for Friday.

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