PHOTO: The P-wing pillar that was struck by a vehicle was boarded up at school the next day.
By Lyah Fitzpatrick,
Davis High administrators and students are addressing the aftermath of a senior prank that involved destruction of school property, the uprooting of trees and the relocation of farm animals from the barn to the North Gym among other acts.
On May 23, Davis High seniors arrived on campus to continue the week of senior pranking. They inserted expanding glue into the locks of the P-wing building, smeared mud on N-wing windows and plastered posters around campus reading “Principal Brown, Make DHS Great Again.”
Moreover, the seniors continued the prank as they damaged school property and involved animals owned the Davis High chapter of the Future Farmers of America (FFA).
The glue, mud and posters disrupted school activity, especially as the P-wing doors were removed from their hinges until lunchtime to replace the locks.
“I think it’s really sad,” said student teacher Nicola Williams. “Students don’t understand how personally teachers take it.”
However, the night time prank setup moved further when seniors moved animals from the FFA barn to the North Gym, shutting them in overnight with one bag of feed.
Around four goats, 17 pigs and five chickens were a part of the act, according to FFA senior Lauren Wilcox. She believes that they were most likely lured to the gym with bait pans. When FFA members arrived early in the morning to feed their animals, they found empty pens and coops.
“[The animals] were probably confused, and thirsty, and scared,” Wilcox said. “It’s not just a prank, it’s really just cruel.”
For FFA students, leaving different animals together in an unnatural environment is a major concern. In these situations, there is a higher risk of cross contamination, according to Wilcox.
Throughout the day, the owners tended to the animals’ needs and assisted in their recuperation.
Cleaning up after the animals’ overnight stay was no easy task. The pigs, goats and chickens produced waste overnight, and more than a dozen non-Davis High members of the district maintenance team had to assist custodian Fred Hyatt to sterilize the gym floor.
“It disrupts everybody’s schedules,” Hyatt said.
However, Hyatt admitted that “[senior pranks are] an every year event […] It’s gonna happen no matter what.”
The night’s events did not end there. Trees recently planted by the Environmental Club were also uprooted.
Additionally, a Jeep ran into a P-wing load bearing pole, and seniors quickly scattered from campus.
The driver of the car was pulled over and given a sobriety test, but the police released him. The district was responsible for determining any consequences.
Davis High administration responded to the entire event by addressing the school. At around 12:20 p.m. on Thursday, Principal McHale came onto the loudspeaker.
“While I wholeheartedly support the attempts by our student body to find ways to come together to engage in positive ways to celebrate achievements and time spent together, I don’t support or condone actions that are disruptive, costly, unsafe, damaging or violate school rules and/or school district policy,” McHale said.
Some seniors disapprove of the prank and wish to make up for what happened. Senior Elena Bock and Catherine de la Peña worked together to form a group to aid with cleanup and restoration. Senior Alli Ayers is a participant of this group.
“I am truly saddened by what happened to the FFA animals,” Ayers said.
The group plans on re-planting the tree that was cut down, raising funds for the FFA class and finding ways to spread positivity around campus.