Approximately 100 Carrollton High School students and 100 junior high school students left their classrooms Wednesday morning to remember, in silence, the 17 people who lost their lives in a Florida school shooting one month ago. The message was, This is how you affect change.
Earlier this week school administrators said they were open to the nationally planned walk-out, but they also wanted to use the event as a teaching opportunity about student’s personal responsibility and obligation to affect change in the political and social causes they care about.
The demonstration was orderly and peaceful at both locations. Once students returned to class, administrators broadcasted a video about student safety and a message to students, telling them that for issues involving legislation, they can contact government leaders and express their concerns.
School officials in the Carroll County District were not able to provide numbers on student participation. However, Superintendent Scott Cowart said teachers and staff used the walkout-discussion to teach that there are productive ways to express concerns: ” Principals at our high schools did a phenomenal job of interfacing with student leadership and students in general. They were brainstorming ways to take the concern for school safety and honor the seventeen deaths in Florida and making that a learning experience for everybody in our buildings. Hats off to them and hats off to our students who were willing to see that as an opportunity to learn and grow.”
Organizers of the national walk-out said the purpose was to highlight “Congress inaction against the gun violence plaguing our schools and neighborhoods.”