As of right now, there are several school walk-outs being organized across the nation by multiple groups and information is circulating on social media. The sponsors of these walk-outs are espousing a variety of stated positions for their walk-outs, each with a slightly unique political statement. Many of our children are inspired and wish to take part in these events. The administration was approached by student leadership immediately after the shootings in Florida about taking part in these walk-outs.
Initial conversations about the walk-outs included the idea of students leaving the building, and likelihood that many would exit campus. The administration made it clear that leaving the campus is truancy, an infraction that is clearly covered in our Student Code of Conduct. When students enter our building for the day, they become our responsibility. We are accountable for their safety and their whereabouts until the school day concludes. Regardless of the fervor and inspiration behind these movements, that fact of safety and accountability cannot be overlooked.
The administration is aware of the importance of this moment for some of our students, and we recognize their passionate desire to be involved. There are, however, some important issues for consideration. First, the school does not wish to be pigeon-holed into supporting any particular political statement. The school does not want to be viewed as espousing any particular singular solution to this issue of school safety. We are on the front-lines inside this building every day, and we know intimately and personally that the solution is not one particular initiative--it is complicated, multifaceted, and likely requires a variety of solutions.
Secondly, safety of our students is paramount. The idea of having students exit our buildings at a well-advertised day and time seems contrary to our mission of keeping our children safe.
Thirdly, we are a building with an expressed goal of educating our students, and in order for instruction to occur, we have to manage disruptions to protect that goal.
With the above concerns in mind, the administration has promised to sit down with our student dialogue committee to create an event that will seek to satisfy most desires for both students and administration. Invited to the table will be student dialogue members, administration, law enforcement, school board members, and staff.
Students and administration will work to create a statement of our message that is free from the grip of outside political parties. We will create an event that communicates a message that is our message and ours alone.
Thank you for your support of your school.