Students look to interim principal for prank policies

Brinna Dochniak

For decades, Stillwater seniors have practiced the tradition of a school-wide prank with little interruption. Along with this “tradition”, the administration has played a cat-and-mouse game with seniors in an attempt to put an end to these pranks. Various principles have employed different scare tactics to frighten kids away from pranks, but all to seemingly no avail.

This year Dr. Donald Johnson stepped up as the new head principle at SAHS. In the past, Dr. Laager attempted to control senior pranks by sending out mass emails warning kids of the “severe consequences” which would follow senior pranks. Now, many eyes are on Dr. Johnson to see what his approach is, and if it works.

Although the school handbook does not mention anything about pranking in particular, Johnson had a few words on the issue.

“I don’t believe that pranks are a tradition,” said principal Johnson. “There have been years when Stillwater didn’t have a prank, and there are many other schools which don’t have a prank.”

Johnson brings up concerns about the pranks, but he is open to a mild prank. Previously principals have been very conservative about pranks and the punishments which would follow the, but Johnson seems to be more on the kids’ side.

“The more I do to discourage it, the more it’s going to happen. I feel like it has diminishing returns. To me, seniors know what’s inappropriate behavior and that’s not. I’ll respond to pranks, but I don’t believe preemptive measures are necessary,” Said principal Johnson.

He then went on to elaborate on what an “appropriate” prank would entail.

“A good prank isn’t mean spirited,” Explained principal Johnson. “Both parties have fun and can laugh about it afterwards. It didn’t hurt anybody and it wasn’t mean-spirited. That’s really the key word: mean-spirited… You have to think beforehand: ‘who am I going to hurt with this?’”

Overall, this progressive stance on school pranks seems to be a welcome change. Johnson’s policy on pranks is a welcome change for those students looking to end school with an (appropriate) bang.

“If it doesn’t hurt people, and it’s not going to take my custodians days to clean up, I don’t want to make a mountain out of a molehill,” said Johnson, and this reporter agrees. Keep it fun, keep it safe, and make sure it is in good taste.