Toll Gate athletes suspended for attending party

WARWICK, R.I. (WPRI) — A number of Toll Gate High School students have been suspended from athletics for attending a party over the weekend, Warwick Superintendent Philip Thornton announced Tuesday.

A total of 19 students from various teams were given 15-day suspensions for violating the school department’s code of conduct. According to Thornton, a parent informed a member of the coaching staff about a large party where alcohol and drugs were being consumed by students.

Once school administrators were made aware of the incident, they interviewed a number of student-athletes, who were given the opportunity to confirm or deny their presence at the party. Those who admitted to being there were suspended as a result, Thornton said.

The suspensions went into effect on Monday.

Thornton said the suspended students can return to their teams for practice after 10 days and participate in competition after 15 days. Where appropriate, junior varsity athletes were moved up to varsity to fill the vacancies, according to the superintendent.

“It’s part of a larger problem, especially with teenage kids,” said one Warwick parent. “You don’t want to do these stupid things and ruin college in the future.”

She also said that “the situation is just tough on both the school and the kids, but it’s unfortunate the whole thing happened.”

Warwick school’s athletic handbook prohibits the use of alcohol and drugs. Students and their parents are required to sign a form acknowledging their understanding of that rule prior to joining a team.