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Students, schools, split over national 17-minute walkout

06 March 2018

Following the school shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., on February 14, students across the country have begun speaking up, not only on gun violence but on other school safety issues as well.

A 16-year-old Banks County High School student was arrested Monday for threatening students at the school.

According to the Anderson County Sheriff's Office, the notes were found in a classroom at the high school on Monday afternoon.

"We want to protest against gun shooters and violence in the world, said 5th grader Bella Wesley".

A deputy interviewed the student, who said he was joking.

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"We don't see that as a bad thing", said Patrick Giblin, Webster University spokesman. "Additionally, a walkout in support of gun reform legislation could provoke a simultaneous walkout in support of gun ownership rights, which could lead to unrest at school".

KIRO 7 has learned some students arrested for making threats, or even bringing weapons to school are often allowed and encouraged by state and federal laws to return to the same school weeks later.

"The exception to the rule, however, is when your student's misbehavior involves "Special Circumstances"- weapons, illegal drugs, or serious bodily injury".

"If they vote for this, I'm going to vote for every single march that comes across the desk afterward", he said.

Student organizer Vikiana Petit-Homme, 16, writes out the agenda in advance of a meeting about joining a national student walk-out on March 14. They are providing resources and facilities they will need for the day of the walkout.

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But a walk-out? No, he said the school hasn't heard from any students about participating in the 17-minute walk-out.

"We have waited so long that we have created a list of victims and it goes on and on and on", Ramadan said.

Virginia Beach Schools officials emphasized that students aren't allowed to leave school property during the instructional day, and for security reasons, parents and community members can't take part in demonstrations at school.

Students like Michael Martinez, a junior at Weston High School in MA, are taking comfort in the overwhelming support from colleges. It's to make sure that you are hearing us.

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Students, schools, split over national 17-minute walkout