School Gun-Violence Walkout Tests Student Rights and School Responsibilities

March 13, 2018

Wednesday morning, at 10 o'clock, students at schools across the country will walk out of their classrooms. The plan is for them to leave school — or at least gather in the hallway — for 17 minutes. That's one minute for each of the victims in last month's school shooting in Parkland, Fla.

The walkout has galvanized teens nationwide and raised big questions for schools about how to handle protests.

The organizers, Women's March Youth EMPOWER, have made it clear: While this walkout is meant to honor the victims in Parkland, as well as anyone who's experienced gun violence, it is also a political call to action.

"It's about protesting Congress' inaction when it comes to gun violence," says Kaleab Jegol, a 17-year-old high school senior and protest coordinator from Ohio.

Organizers have posted their demands online, including an assault weapons ban and expanded background checks. Jegol knows, their protest isn't sitting well with some school leaders. In Needville, Texas, Superintendent Curtis Rhodes issued a stern warning to students and parents:

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