STAMFORD, Vt. -- Stamford Elementary School was vandalized over the weekend after a vehicle drove onto school property and did doughnuts across the school's recess field, leaving rutted grass in its wake.
School Principal Gregory Betti said Bennington County Sheriff officers were at the school Tuesday to examine the vandalism and investigate the cause.
The tires left an imprint "at least" two- to three-inches deep, Betti said, and the field will need to have sod replaced. In addition to the tire tracks, the grass turf was significantly "torn up," he said.
Betti estimated the cost of the damage to exceed $1,000. He said the district has already contacted its insurance company.
"The school is up in arms that somebody did not respect the school enough to understand the impact this kind of damage has done beyond a dollar amount," said Betti, who described the vandalism as "invasive."
The field had been used during recess, lunch and touch football. Repairs would likely be made after the winter, when the weather improves, Betti said.
"The kids are not used to seeing this at school, so it bothers everybody," he said.
A representative for the Bennington County Sheriff Department was not available before press time to indicate what possible charges could result from the vandalism.
Betti said school officials suspect the damage took place between Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning. The vehicle also left tire tracks on the baseball outfield grass and behind the basketball court.
Betti said the vehicle could have entered the school through an entrance near the school library or through an entrance near the first- and second-grade classrooms.
Betti said the tire tracks left behind indicate a pick-up truck or a "large four-wheeler."
"Luckily, because of the timing, we won't be using [the yard] as much as we would be in the spring, summer or early fall dates."
Anyone with additional information is encouraged to contact the Sheriff's Department at 802-442-4900.