Vandals hit three city high schools

By SAM BENGERsamb@gladstoneobserver.com.au

THREE Gladstone high schools were targeted by vandals last weekend, but educators believe local teenagers are not responsible.

Toolooa State High School principal Roger Atkins said two windows were broken sometime during the weekend, but vandalism was not a common problem for Gladstone schools.

'It doesn't seem to be an ongoing problem ? it seems some people visit the town, who are used to using public schools for their own means of recreation, and they create a bit of annoyance, but I don't believe it's our kids doing this,' Mr Atkins said.

He said students were well aware that costs arising from vandalism meant less resources for the school, which was not in the best interests of students.

'They realise that the money we spend on repairing windows, for instance, means that they might miss out on new computers or furniture they want,' he said.

Mr Atkins said Gladstone schools had a good relationship with the community and local police, who did regular patrols of the areas surrounding schools.

Gladstone police Sergeant Mal Nichols said sometime over the weekend vandals also broke a window at the art block of Gladstone State High School.

Chanel College deputy principal Geraldine Dyer said overnight on Friday someone had stuck a garden hose through the window of a classroom, turning the tap on and causing water damage to a classroom.

'There's always costs associated with vandalism and it's an inconvenience, but it hasn't disrupted classes and students have been moved to other rooms while the carpet dries out,' she said.

Ms Dyer said it was "disrespectful and disappointing' the incident had occurred, but there was no indication the vandalism had been caused by local students.

Chanel College parent Marion Williams said it was frustrating that school funds had to be used to clean up vandalism.



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