Three Rye High School students were arrested when their "Freshman Friday" antics got out of hand. According to Westchester police, the three rising seniors, ages 16 and 17, "allegedly kidnapped 15 freshmen, drove them to Marshlands Conservancy and hazed them with a paddle." Racking up charges of hazing, assault, and unlawful imprisonment is certainly one way to pad a college application.

How did the cops find out? Well, the incoming freshmen's parents, of course. And the parents had good reason to be upset: A few students were hospitalized as they "were beaten raw on the buttocks and legs."

According to, in 2010, Rye school officials warned parents about "Freshman Friday":

Dear Parents,

Fear is in the air at Rye Middle School. There is a lot of chatter that June 4 is Freshman Friday, and eighth grade boys are fearful they are going to be attacked by balloons filled with Nair and have their bottoms smacked with paddles. It is hard to tell what is rumor and what is actually going to happen.

For several years, an odious spring tradition has taken place in Rye: junior boys paddle eighth grade boys off school grounds. In recent years we have heard of fewer instances of paddling, but the practice has not been extinguished.

Hazing is not tolerated in this community. The Rye Police Department will be on patrol tomorrow and will be on heightened alert all weekend. If you are the parent of an eighth grade boy, we suggest you encourage your son to keep a low profile this weekend. If the unthinkable should happen and you child should be on the receiving end of a hazing incident, we strongly encourage you to contact the Rye Police and help them identify the perpetrators. Together we can put an end to this dangerous tradition.

Have a safe weekend.


Ann Edwards