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National Walkout Information

Dear GCCS Students/Staff/Parents/Community:

There has been an enormous amount of media attention regarding planned protests/walkouts in response to the school shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. The National School Walkout is planned for Wednesday, March 14th at 10:00 a.m. and is calling for students to walk out of class for 17 minutes in honor of the 17 victims killed last month. A second walkout is also planned for Friday, April 20th at 10:00 a.m. on the 19th anniversary of the Columbine High School shooting.  I wanted to make you aware of these events and share the district’s plans for these dates.

We do not feel it is safe to allow students to leave the school building during events that are so highly publicized, but we also believe that their voices need to be respected. As a district, we have worked this entire school year on implementation of our academy model and the number one thing we revisit during our work is discussion about the importance of student voice. We are a district with fabulous student leaders and we have encouraged our principals to include students and staff in conversations about how to best address potential walkouts. We, as a district, have decided to support our students by allowing them to hold student organized events on Wednesday, March 14th.

We have kept in mind the age of our students and understand these events aren’t age appropriate for our elementary students so they will not participate. Middle and high schools have planned their events to memorialize the victims of the Parkland and Marshall County shooting and building-specific information is posted on the Greater Clark County Schools’ website at gccschools.com. We will allow our students to share their voice, then return to their instructional day.

I encourage you to speak to your child about their thoughts on this nationwide movement and their student organized event. It is important for students and parents to understand, any student who does walk out of the school building during the advertised dates/times will be in violation of the district’s truancy policy #5200 and will be disciplined.  Our students do have First Amendment rights at school as long as that speech does not cause a major disruption; however, our top priority is to keep our students and staff safe so building-specific plans are a balance between respecting student voice and assuring student and staff safety.   We appreciate your support in this matter.

#BeGreater
Andrew Melin, Ph.D.
Superintendent of Schools

Charlestown High School

Charlestown High School

Students will walk out of their classrooms and go to the auditorium at 10:00 a.m. Representatives from each class will speak and share a Google slide they created. A moment of silence will be held for all school shooting victims in the last year. A student led conversation will be held about the need to put student safety first. A video will be shown about noticing signs of struggling students and how to help. School Resource Officer Kevin Fisher will inform students how to properly report information to the school and proper authorities. Students will sign a #Never Again banner. 

Charlestown Middle School

Charlestown Middle School

Student Council President, Madison DeVore, will welcome students and set the purpose for the assembly. Students who wanted to speak submitted their speech in advance to the Student Council and 2-5 speakers will participate. Student Council members will read the names of the 17 victims from Parkland, Florida and 2 victims from Marshall County, KY, followed by a moment of silence. A Student Council member will close the assembly and students will have the option to sign a banner that reads “Keep Our Schools Safe.”

Jeffersonville High School

Jeffersonville High School

Students and staff are encouraged to wear white as a symbol of hope for the healing communities and hope for our schools to be safe. During lunch times, students will share words of encouragement and hope on two large banners that we will send to Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and Marshall County High School. Students may also complete forms sharing their concerns, ideas, and thoughts about safety at Jeffersonville High School. These forms will be used in the School Safety Forum that our Friends of Rachel leaders are planning for April 20.

At the beginning of period 5, via intercom, students will line the halls near their classes to unify for end to school violence. There will be 19 seconds of silence in memory of the recent deaths, followed a reading of the names of the victims from both Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and Marshall County High School. It will conclude by asking everyone to commit to ending violence at school and also commit to keeping Jeff High a safe place to learn and do great work.

During the united time in the halls, WJHI will film from various locations to produce a short video of Jeff High honoring the victims of recent school violence and taking a stand for safety in schools, which will be posted on the Jeff High website and social media accounts. 

New Washington Middle/High School

New Washington Middle/High School

A school assembly will be held with a guest speaker. Students will have the ability to write a message to share with Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and Marshall County High School. Students can also submit in writing statements that will be read during the assembly.

Parkview Middle School

Parkview Middle School

Principal Jeremy Stewart is addressing all student’s at 9:55 and then students will be completing reflection sheets for display in the halls at 10 am. During the day, presentations by Steve Grant during periods 2, 4 and 6 will take place in the auditorium.  In the cafeteria, the diversity council has put together a bulletin board promoting tolerance and acceptance. Lastly, students will sign an inspiration banner to send to the students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School for their presentations to stakeholders later this spring. – Guest speaker Steve Grant – click here for flyer.

River Valley Middle School

River Valley Middle School

Principal Michelle Dyer will acknowledge the day during her morning announcements. Students will be encouraged to engage in a positive way with 17 new friends to honor the 17 victims in Parkland, Florida. Students will be allowed to present a vetted piece of writing during a 6th grade only assembly in the cafeteria and a 7th/8th grade assembly in the gymnasium.

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