Message to Students Regarding Walkout

Message to Students Regarding Walkout
Posted on 03/14/2018
We Rise by Lifting Others
Below is the text of an announcement read to students this morning over the PA system prior to the walkout.

Good Morning Kennett Middle School, this is your Principal Mr. Biche. As some of you are aware there are students planning on participating in a student walk out today at 10:00am. This walk out has been planned in response to the tragic events that occurred in Parkland Florida one month ago. The issue of violence in schools is complex and people will have different opinions of how to address the issue. The issue of violence in schools is also not just about the type of tragedy that unfolded at Marjory Stoneham Douglas High School but is also about everyday issues that occur in all schools. Violence, aggression, bullying, teasing, hateful language, all of these actions make people feel unsafe in schools. Whatever your opinion on how to solve these issues and whatever your choice on whether to walk out or stay in class, I hope that we can all agree that we are opposed to school violence and that we support being safe in schools. I believe, as does each and every student I have spoken with about this, that this is our common ground, opposed to school violence and supporting being safe in schools.
 
So today, some students will hold a walk out. That walk out is an event. Events begin and end. I will suggest that if you are serious about your desires for safe schools for yourself and all students and staff in our buildings that there are actions each of you can take everyday that will make a difference, the biggest difference. These are actions that we can all take, regardless of how we may feel about the walkout. Making our schools safer starts with the most simple act of kindness toward one another. A person who comes to school and feels kindness from others will know greater safety. A person who comes to school and does not experience or witness bullying or teasing and does not hear hateful or derogatory language will feel the change in the safety of our school. So I challenge each and every one of you, starting today, to work toward our common ground by reaching out to others with acts of kindness. If you would like, reach out to 17 people who you don’t know well and learn about them, thank people for what they do or have done, help others who need help and choose your words so that they support and lift up those around you. Then when you come to school tomorrow, do it again and don’t stop until you know longer think about it and you just act kindly toward others because that is what you do.
 
Students are reminded that classes will continue during the 17 minute walkout. In order to ensure the highest level of safety for all students, and due in part to the outside weather and parking lot conditions, we are encouraging any student who chooses to walk out of class to then “walk in” by using the courtyard area outside the main office. At all times, be mindful that any message you carry will only be heard by others if it is done with respect for all, courtesy and maturity and within the bounds of appropriate school behavior. Each student I have spoken with has stated that the duration is only 17 minutes. At that time anyone participating should return immediately and orderly to class. Students missing class are expected to make up any missed work and return to work upon return to class.
 
Thank you for your attention.

Rick Biche, Principal
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