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Holdrege classrooms vandalized; Girls ages 8, 6 are suspects; paint, sand, glitter leave $20K in damage to classrooms
Posted: Monday, May 16, 2011 1:00 pm | Updated: 12:07 pm, Mon May 16, 2011.
By JENNIFER CHICK Hub Regional Correspondent | 16 comments
HOLDREGE â€” Itâ€™s a sad and unexpected ending to the school year for kindergarten students at Franklin Elementary School in Holdrege.
Because of vandalism to both kindergarten classrooms at Franklin during the weekend, kindergarten students will not be able to return to their classrooms for the last week of school.
Instead, Franklin kindergartners and their parents were informed by a recorded phone call from Franklin Elementary Principal Amber Porter late Sunday night that they will not have school this week.
â€œThe damage was severe enough that we cannot have class in the classrooms,â€� Porter wrote in a brief email statement.
The district looked at all options but could not find the space or supplies to have class for the kindergarten students for this last week.
â€œIf we could have figured out someplace, somewhere to put them, we would have,â€� Superintendent Cinde Wendell said. She said she regrets the inconvenience this has caused to parents now looking for day care.
According to Holdrege Police Department Officer Leland Rodewald, the incident was reported by parents who discovered the vandalism after their children came home Sunday evening covered in paint.
The police report by Officer James Nelson said the suspects are an 8-year-old girl and a 6-year-old girl.
The girls allegedly gained access to the two portable classrooms, located northwest of the main building, but police arenâ€™t sure how.
They poured paint, glitter and sand around the two classrooms. They also wrote on the walls with markers and tore up and broke books and toys. In both classrooms, they released butterflies the kindergartners were planning to release during their graduation ceremony.
Damage is estimated at $20,000.
The girls were released to their parents, and the matter was referred to the Phelps County Attorneyâ€™s Office.
The kindergarten students will still report to the school Wednesday and Thursday afternoons for graduation ceremonies and field day activities.
"The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." Marcus Aurelius, Roman Emperor and stoic philosopher, 121-180 A.D.