5 students involved in Braintree house party able to play high school sports after judge’s ruling

BRAINTREE, Mass. — UPDATE March 6, 2020: The Braintree girl’s hockey team players won their motion. The judge ordered the school not to enforce the social probation policy against the five girls who were at an underage party. The girls will be able to continue playing in the hockey tourney.


Original report:

Students at a Braintree house party have been disciplined and won’t be able to participate in any school activities including sports. However, an attorney for five of the hockey players on the girl’s hockey team managed to get a judge to step in and block their punishment until a hearing next week.

A civil judge granted a temporary restraining order that blocks the school from enforcing the discipline until further notice. The girls were able to play in Tuesday night’s hockey game, which their team won.

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Their attorney says the school's policy goes too far because the students can't be in the same room as alcohol, even if they are not touching it at all.

“Braintree goes above and beyond and does the ‘mere presence rule,’ and that rule is illegal,” said Dave Flanagan, the attorney for the students. “It’s unenforceable. There is no way they can do it."

Flanagan argued that the girls did not get any due process before the school disciplined them. Law enforcement said that none of the nearly 50 students involved are facing criminal or juvenile charges in connection to the party.

“It is a good intent but the practical end of it is you can’t go to a party," Flanagan said.

The attorney also showed the judge texts exchanged between one of the students and her parent. The first reading, “get us now party is huge and kids are drinking. I have a bad feeling.”

That parent replied, saying, “on my way. Get out of house now!!!” before the student answered with a pair of messages that read, “I know we r waiting outside,” and “the cops r here I’m freaking out what do I do???”

Parents that spoke with Boston 25 News about the incident are split on the punishment the students face.

“It seems a little unfair that the kids most involved in the school get punished the most," said Cheryl Hawe. "And these are good kids. They’re kids, they made a mistake.”

“I don’t think the kids should be playing either," said Joe Donovan. "[They] should keep their act together during the school year, usually a lot [is] at stake for these kids.”

The owners of the Braintree home where the party was are likely to be charged, according to local police.