LCHS Students Plan Walkout to Honor Florida Victims

Photo courtesy Jonah Bernstein
Members of the La Cañada High School club Activism USA, whose members are supporting a walkout on Wednesday, March 14, and the March for Our Lives on Saturday, March 24, include (front row, from left) Gaby Lichuki, Olivia Garland, Faith Florez, Haley Flynn and Nicole Son. Back: Cole Schute, Jonah Bernstein, Adam Goodman, Jack Weirick, Noah Jongeling, Courtney Culver and Bella Gardina.

The adults in the room at Tuesday’s La Cañada Unified School District Governing Board meeting still were deliberating about how best to handle a student walkout planned on March 14, but students on campus at La Cañada High School already had plans in motion.
In addition to some LCUSD elementary parents who are interested in participating at their students’ campuses, several LCHS students intend to take part in nationwide walkout on March 14. The plan is to walk out of class at 10 a.m. for 17 minutes to honor the 17 people who were killed in the shooting on Feb. 14 in at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, senior Abigail Lidar said.
“First and foremost, we need to pay tribute to the victims and to the students in Florida who are being so proactive in advocating for legislation they want to see changed,” said Lidar, adding that she hopes the walkout also will serve as an opportunity to promote forthcoming marches. “We want to honor the victims and encourage people to use their voice.”
She said there are plans forming for another walkout on April 20, possibly to end at Memorial Park, where she envisioned speakers as well as students from other schools participating. Senior Jonah Bernstein said there also are ongoing efforts to arrange for a bus to transport students to L.A. for another nationwide event on March 24, which is being billed as the March for Our Lives.
“It’s really just about making sure that this can’t happen anywhere, anywhere at all,” Bernstein said. “It’s sort of getting the politicians to hear it from the students because they’ve heard it from parents before and it hasn’t helped anything. I think maybe getting the perspective of the students, the people who are more at risk for these kinds of things, maybe that will get them to actually take action.”
Lidar said Monday that she had been involved in conversations with administrators about the walkout, and though they made clear that such an event would not be school sponsored and would count as an absence, she and her peers weren’t dissuaded.
“A bunch of us independently wanted to organize something,” Lidar said. “Then a few of us met and talked and we agreed it would be great if we joined forces to organize this. We all come with different components of the organization, whether that be speech writing or reaching out to students or communicating with administrators. We’re all definitely passionate about the issue and also passionate about organizing.”

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