Students participate in student-led walkout

Roughly one hundred students participated on March 14th in a 17 minute walkout

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Students participate in student-led walkout

Junior Maddo Adams carries a sign to the walkout.

Junior Maddo Adams carries a sign to the walkout.

Shelby Lewis

Junior Maddo Adams carries a sign to the walkout.

Shelby Lewis

Shelby Lewis

Junior Maddo Adams carries a sign to the walkout.

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The walkout took place at approximately 10 A.M. yesterday morning with what appeared to be over one hundred students in attendance. Many students met in the front of the building at 9:55, 5 minutes prior to the 10AM start time. 

Senior Keena Ball began the walkout with seventeen seconds of silence “in order to honor the victims of the Parkland Shooting” that had taken place one month ago on February 14. Silence overtook the participators as everyone quieted down to show their respect for those who were murdered.

“I was impressed that everyone shut up long enough to make it happen,” remarked senior Madelyn Simpson with a laugh.

Following the seventeen seconds of silence, Ball invited everyone to join them in singing the song “Imagine” by John Lennon. Nearly all those present joined in to create a single voice.

Trevin Haines, a sophomore, described the students singing as “emotional” and “beautiful”. He remarked, “It made me happy to see people come together [for something like this] to make a difference.”

Afterwards, Ball gave a speech saying, “We are part of something much bigger than ourselves.” She then invited students to come up to share and discuss their stories or reasons for attending.

“This is a time for discussion as well as action,” she said, and one by one students came up to share their thoughts.

One stepped forward to express their anger at violence in school. “It makes me so angry, it makes me feel something I can’t even describe,” said Maddison Hadley, a freshman.

Others came to advocate that change was needed. Hadley expressed that, “Violence is everywhere and it’s going to continue to be everywhere unless we do something,” as she asked students to be kind and considerate to each other

Chandler Isom, a senior, couldn’t say exactly what she wanted to be changed, but she made it clear that, “No matter what side you’re on, we can all agree that [the violence] needs to stop.”

As the seventeen minutes that made up the walk out came to an end, Ball and other students who had volunteered to put the walkout together handed out notecards to students.

“We cannot agree on one change that needs to happen but we can agree that change needs to happen,” Ball explained to her audience as the cards were handed out.

Students were encouraged to write down what change they thought should happen on a notecard and turn it in to any of the student volunteers wearing an orange ribbon. If the student couldn’t write their views before they left, the volunteers would be wearing the ribbons all throughout the rest of the week

They plan to take these note cards and send them in a letter to the capital, urging government officials to bring about change.