St. Xavier High School president asks parents, alumni to stop drinking at football games

CINCINNATI -- Police could soon be handing out citations for drinking at a local high school’s football games.

In a letter sent to parents and alumni Wednesday, the president of St. Xavier High School said school officials are considering asking Springfield Township police to write citations for the “serious and growing problem” of fans drinking before and during football games.

“Recently our staff have endured insults and aggressive behavior on the part of parents and alumni who were obviously inebriated,” President Tim Howe said in the letter.

Howe said he sent the letter because an adult who had been drinking tried to get into the game last weekend, and the adult and a staff member got into a verbal altercation.

“We feel like it's a bad example for our students to see adults -- whether it's their parents or alumni -- inebriated at an event like that, and so that’s why we're really insisting on them being good models for our students of what we hope they will become someday,” Howe said.

Howe also said eliminating all tailgating could also happen if the drinking doesn't stop.

Officials stopped allowing reentry to try to deter people from going to their cars and drinking, Howe said, but fans have been buying multiple tickets to get back into the game. Fans have even tried to bring drinks into the game.

The drinking is not just a nuisance to others -- the high school could receive a sanction from Ohio High School Athletic Association for violating regulations on alcohol.

Parents are responding well to the reminder, Howe said. Some have even offered to pass out the letter at tailgating events if they suspect someone is drinking.

Monica Johnson-Chapman’s son plays varsity football, and she attends every game. When it comes to drinking at games, Johnson-Chapman said following the rules is simply a matter of principle.

“It's about doing what's right and we need to teach our sons that if there's a rule or policy in place that we should honor that rule and policy and if we as parents don’t uphold that then what are we really teaching our sons,” Johnson-Chapman said.

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