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Local High School Students Plan Walkout as a Call for Peace

Students at Roosevelt High School in Kent are planning to take part in the national school walkout on  Wednesday.

The walkout at Roosevelt is being planned by both the school and its students in solidarity with the victims of the Florida school shooting. Sixteen-year-old Chase Brown says he hopes the walkout sparks change.

"I believe that this is more than just a security or mental health issue; this is a national issue that we need to address. And I think because it’s happened so many times, if we don’t make any sort of change, it’s gonna happen again," Brown said.

Brown says stricter gun control is a change he would like to see. He says that seeing the Parkland students speaking out inspired him to stand up.

Similarly, a group of students at Firestone High School in Akron plan to hold a walk-out the same day. Megan May is a 10th-grader at the school and an advocate with the Student Coalition Against Violence. She says her group formed in response to the shooting.

May discusses the influence of the Parkland survivors.

“I mean, we’ve lived with this, like, our student body, for our entire lives in education, but when the Parkland survivors stood up and said, ‘We won’t take this anymore,’ it kind of encouraged all of us to finally say, ‘We agree. This is not OK,’” May said.

We've lived with this ... for our entire lives in education. But when the Parkland survivors stood up and said, 'We won't take this anymore,' it kind of encouraged all of us to finally say, 'We agree. This is not OK.

A spokesman for Akron Public Schools says the school board has a written policy allowing students to participate in peaceful assembly and free expression.

The walkout will include speeches, poetry readings, chanting and a song by the school’s Women’s Chorus. May says some staff members will be walking out with the students.