HILLIARD, Ohio (WCMH) – New rules are now in place in Hilliard for home football games to “boost security.”
The changes were announced in the Hilliard City Schools regular district newsletter.
“In an effort to boost security at our home football games, we will no longer allow students to bring in backpacks, string bags, or wear fannypacks. Beginning Friday, October 4, students will also no longer be allowed to bring in water bottles,” the newsletter reads.
The implementation of the rules coincided with the homecoming game for Hilliard Davidson. Students still packed the stands and parents don’t have any problems with the new rules.
“It’s the right decision to make and it’s unfortunate because when we grew up you could do all those things,” said Mike Gonidakis, who has a daughter at Davidson. “You could leave your car unlocked and your front door unlocked, but that’s not the world we live in today.”
The newsletter does not cite any specific incident being a spark for the changes.
“That’s just the way society is today and the way things are and how charged up people are,” said Les Carrier, whose son is on Davidson’s football team. “I think folks just need to remember to respect each other and treat each other with kindness and human dignity.”
According to the newsletter, students are also now required to be in the stands during the game.
“I didn’t understand that, but I’m sure there’s a reason. There’s always a good reason,” said Carrier.
Hours before the Hilliard Davidson homecoming game, the homecoming pep rally was canceled amid safety concerns.
According to a letter sent out Friday by the school district and the Hilliard Police Department, they’ve received many reports of students “uttering statements about violence surrounding Davidson High School.”
The superintendent and the police chief wrote, in part:
“Today, the magnitude of these rumors became a disruption to our school day. For that reason, the Homecoming Pep Rally at Davidson was canceled. There was never any threat of violence. The principal addressed the students to try and stop the rumors.”