Emporia school playgrounds closed after dark

EMPORIA, Kan. (KSNT) – New signs in front of Emporia school playgrounds suggest there have been unwelcome visitors on school grounds and they aren’t playing basketball or having fun.

The signs say that Emporia elementary school playgrounds will be closed from sunset to sunrise and that trespassers will be prosecuted.

The district made the decision to put up the signs after school security guards caught unlawful behavior from young adults on video surveillance- vandalizing school grounds.

And it’s been a growing problem, according to Emporia Public School’s Nancy Horst.

“We are doing it for the safety of the kids,” she says. “To protect the property and to just make it a safe environment for the children.”

And while some of the kids don’t seem to mind, some parents do. Horst says that some parents are concerned that the decision to put of the signs might restrict children’s use of the playgrounds.

KSNT spoke with the Emporia Police Department and they say that they’re working closely with the school to make sure that everyone is safe.

“Until we posted these, we couldn’t cite anyone for trespassing,” says Horst. “Now if the police see someone at night, they can either ask them to leave or cite them for trespassing.”

The signs have been posted at seven schools in Emporia.

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