Principal Kline announces CIF-issued sanctions for student behavior during recent football game

This story was updated on Oct 11.

In Friday’s morning announcements, Principal Brent Kline addressed the Paly student body to detail consequences following the varsity football game at Gunn on Sept. 10.

Due to poor sportsmanship and student behavior at the game, Paly was required to pay a fine and will face sanctions issued by the California Interscholastic Federation, the governing body for California high school athletics.

Kline said the league banned Paly students from attending the school’s next two football games, including the upcoming one against Menlo Atherton on Sept. 24. However, an exception was made for the following week’s homecoming game against Homestead on Sept. 30.

Kline also said league representatives may observe the homecoming game to ensure Paly’s “bad behaviors have left.”

Possible additional sanctions, including the forced withdrawal of Paly sports in CCS playoffs, will ensue if inappropriate spectator sportsmanship occurs at any future Paly sporting events. 

Sanctions will be finalized by next week and could remain in place throughout the entire school year for all sports. 

Paly will also begin to regulate football games further. Kline said new student section boundaries will not allow students to sit in the front aisle or stand near the railings, and bag checks and breathalyzers will possibly be used for students perceived to be under the influence of alcohol. Students who do not comply with these rules will be banned from future events.

Before spirit week began, ASB members also faced harassment as a result of these recent changes, with some students pressuring members to advocate for keeping spirit week traditions. 

“[ASB] has become targeted by some of our students and bullied,” Kline said. “This type of behavior must stop.”

However, he said spirit week activities, such as rallies and dress up days, would tentatively follow through as usual. Details for the homecoming dance have not changed either.

During spirit week, the number of lunchtime rallies were reduced from five to three.

Kline urged students to not participate in ‘egg wars’ this year in order to prioritize student and community safety.

“Raw and frozen eggs have the potential to cause serious injury and already have over the years,” Kline said. “Illegal substances usually frequent the same event.”

Kline said criminal vandalism is unacceptable in all circumstances, and students and their families will be held accountable for any property damage that occurs. 

Kline said, “It’s time to stop and put an end to the egg war vandalism and its inappropriate student behaviors at events by channeling our energies into a positive direction.”

Egg wars did not take place during spirit week.

At the homecoming game on Sept. 30, all students were breathalyzed and bags were checked before entering the game. Students were instructed to stay away from the railing and to remain on the bleachers.

Assistant principal Erik Olah said that student behavior was overall positive at the game.

“From what I saw tonight, I think our students did a pretty good job,” he said. “We just had to give a few reminders about small little things here and there.”

Olah also said he believed the healthy sportsmanship at the game signaled a return to normalcy at Paly.

Olah said, “Over the years that I’ve been here, our students are very often well-behaved. I just think we needed some reminders and I think we’re growing from it.”