Birmingham students to join nationwide walkout in protest of gun violence


Wednesday, March 14th marks exactly four weeks since 17 students lost their lives in a Florida school shooting. It also marks one week since a 17-year-old Birmingham high school student was killed in a shooting at Huffman High School.

Students and teachers across the nation plan to walk out for 17 minutes at 10 a.m. on Wednesday in protest of gun violence and to raise awareness of school safety. In Birmingham, the school system plans to observe an additional minute, in honor of Courtlin Arrington, a senior whose dreams of becoming a nurse were cut short by a bullet.

A set of guidelines and protocols has been established for Birmingham students, who will be supervised by adults throughout the walkout, school officials say.

"We commend our students for taking an active role in bringing about positive change," said Birmingham City Schools superintendent Dr. Lisa Herring in a press release.

Other Central Alabama schools have taken a different approach to the nationwide protests.

Center Point and Hoover high schools will stage "walk-ins" to assemblies at their respective gyms. Gardendale High School will read off each school shooting victim's name. At Clay-Chalkville High School, students will be allowed to use the time for quiet reflection or to express concerns and ideas.

Clay-Chalkville High School Principal Michael Lee says students who physically walk out will be disciplined according to the school's code of conduct. He says the idea behind the protests is valid but the school wants to allow for a productive discussion in a controlled environment.

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