The school year ended two days early at Frisco Memorial High School after an approved senior prank turned into extensive vandalism.
Cleaning crews were in the building Thursday instead of students.
Three seniors who were not in the building at the time of the damage said they are disappointed their senior year ended this way.
“These two days were going to be our last days to say goodbyes to people we may never see again, say goodbye to our teachers that we care for so much,” senior Abhi Bandi said. “It’s the whole class that had it ruined just because of a few kids that decided to vandalize the school.”
A prank with sticky notes placed all over the school was approved and was to be supervised by officials with the Frisco Independent School District. But the prank Wednesday night evolved into fire extinguishers sprayed throughout the building. Fire alarms were pulled. Furniture was damaged. There were thousands of dollars of damage to a wall, officials said.
Bandi and two friends were watching Dallas Mavericks basketball on TV instead of attending the organized senior prank, but they watched social media as it went bad.
“I don’t want everyone to know Memorial High School and FISD in general as delinquents because our school year was defined by a lot more than just that,” said senior Ryan Song. “Pranks are OK. Pranks are funny. But there’s a fine line between a prank and breaking the law and once you break that law and you cross that barrier, you can’t defend these actions.”
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School officials said they are working with police using social media videos to identify and prosecute students responsible for the damage.
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“I think there should be suitable punishment for the actions,” Bandi said.
A letter to parents said the entire 300,000-square-foot building was being cleaned.
“I don't want our, like, class to be labeled as the one to do this because it wasn't the class as a whole it was just certain students,” senior Pratyush Patra said.
Frisco school officials said the final two days that were canceled will not be made up. They are working with families to recover personal items that were left in the school building.
Below is the letter Frisco ISD sent to parents:
Students, parents, and staff,
First, thank you to all who have reached out and volunteered to help with the campus cleanup. We appreciate your support and understanding as we work through this incident. I want to take a moment to send an update about the situation that occurred on our campus last night. Frisco ISD is working with the Frisco Police Department to investigate the parties involved in the vandalism.
A group of students from Memorial High School was approved to use “post-it” notes on the walls to decorate and place messages around the campus as part of their senior prank last night. Staff members were on site to monitor students but the situation devolved rapidly, and the Frisco Police and Fire Departments became involved. A small group of those students vandalized the campus to a point that classes are not able to be held at MHS for the remainder of the week.
I want to make it clear that campus and District staff are working with police to identify all individuals involved in the vandalism. Disciplinary measures will be enforced and Frisco ISD intends to prosecute those responsible to the fullest extent of the law.
Damage is estimated in the thousands of dollars and includes paint on the walls, destruction of furniture, discharged fire extinguishers throughout campus and more. Every surface on the 300,000 sq. ft. campus must be cleaned, including the walls, ceilings and floors. Frisco ISD will hold the students responsible for costs associated with the clean up.
We are currently determining a plan for parents, students and staff to pick up personal belongings that are still at the campus. We will send a communication about times and dates for pick up sometime next week.