Board tables controversial policy to allow alcohol on school grounds

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LEBANON, Ind. (Oct. 21, 2014) -- Following a FOX59 story that prompted a major viewer response, a local school board voted to hold off on its vote to allow alcohol on school grounds.

Residents showed up at the Lebanon School Board meeting Tuesday to voice their concern over the new policy.

"This is just insane," resident Linda Stuteville said.

"It just doesn't make any sense," resident Grant Hodges said.

The policy, which FOX59 first reported last week, would allow people who rent out a community space recently built onto the front of Lebanon High School to apply for a permit through a caterer to serve beer and wine.

Superintendent Dr. Robert Taylor said the policy would not allow alcohol at any event during hours students are present at school, alcohol must be removed as soon as an event is over and not stored on site and the district would get final approval of all events.

"I can tell you that if and when it is available, that it doesn’t come anywhere close to students or to educational activities," Taylor said.

Opinions are split, though. 51% of viewers who took a FOX59 poll said they did not agree with the policy.

"I just want to make sure that we get it right," board president Tom Merritt said.

For that reason, Merritt and the board voted to table the vote on the policy until their November meeting. Board members expressed a wish that residents would get in touch with them, on either side of the issue, to help them make their decision.

"We knew this was going to be a polarizing issue. I appreciate everyone coming to the board meeting and hopefully we'll see you next time" Merritt said.

The board meets again on Tuesday, November 18 at 7:00 p.m.