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Use of GBMS ID cards starts Friday
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A sample of the Great Bend Middle School identification card is shown. However, the actual cards will have the student's name and photo. - photo by COURTRESY PHOTO

A letter signed by Great Bend Middle School Principal David Reiser and sent to the parents of GBMS students this week explains the procedures put in place to control rowdy behavior by some middle school students at Great Bend High School events.

The plan was implemented by the Unified School District 428 School Board at its Sept. 13 meeting in response to a fight between an eighth and ninth grader at a high school football game Sept. 3 and other unruly actions. "Thank you for your cooperation and assistance as we strive to make the sporting events safe and enjoyable for all," Reiser said.

The following changes apply to all middle school students attending all Great Bend High School extra-curricular activities.

• All Middle School students have been given a photo ID card as of Friday. Each child must have that card with them to get into the football game Friday night and to all high school-sponsored activities for the 2010-2011 school year.

• No student will be admitted without their ID card. If they lose their card, a replacement will be issued for a fee of $5.

• All students will be expected to sit in the middle school section during the game. Any student that is wandering around during the game will be asked once to return to their seat in the middle school section. Any student that is repeatedly out of their seats and wandering around will be asked to leave the stadium and will have their cards pulled by staff. The student would not be allowed into any Great Bend High School events for the remainder of the 2010-2011 school year.

• A middle school student can sit with their parent/guardian but the rules about wandering around would still apply.

"This isn’t a place for parents to drop off their kids for three or four hours," Superintendent Tom Vernon said during the meeting. For the middle schoolers, "it is more of a social activity," Vernon said. "Few go to watch the game." This leads to fights and arguments.

"This has been a problem forever," said Dan Brungardt, district director of business operations. Periodically, the issue has to be addressed.