Every senior class seems to have a prankster and some of us may still be able to recall an incident or humorous event that left a lasting impression with our school.

One analyst, however, wisely warns that before choosing a prank, students should always be aware of potential consequences which could lead to the cancellation of prom, senior activities, or even the graduation ceremony itself.

That's excellent advice since many school pranks, which students planned as a simple joke, have often gone awry and ended up leaving the class with a soiled legacy for graduation. Pranksters need to consider the long-lasting ramifications of their actions and how they can impact their school as a whole.

With the approach of graduation we can also expect to hear about threats. School officials and law enforcement officials in one Philadelphia school have been trying to determine if a threatening letter concerning a sixth-grade class trip to Philadelphia is a prank or a hoax.

The letter warned that two parents in the Council Rock School District were planning to sicken their children and others during a lunch cruise and then sue for damages. The unsigned note was sent to the Chicago headquarters of the company that operates the cruise ship.

Although it didn't involve a prank, some eighth grade students at one Harrisburg area school learned a lesson for misbehaving the hard way – through their stomach. For misbehaving and failing to clean up after themselves, students at Camp Curtain School were served cold sandwiches, instead of the hot meals the district provides, as punishment.

Although it may seem to be a trivial form of punishment, one administrator said the sandwich strategy apparently got through to the class as student behavior soon improved.

This punishment may be considered tame considering the kind of treatment standards many of us were used to seeing "back in the day." Nearly every high school then had its enforcer – a no-nonsense faculty member (often a coach) – who would mete out the punishment he felt the offense warranted and the offender deserved.

There was no appeals court for students who crossed the line with our enforcer. With that kind of iron clad discipline, many of us learned the hard way that pranks and hoaxes just weren't worth the pain.