North Pointe Now

My alternate option

Photo credit: Fox31

By Allison Lackner, Business Manager

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I’m afraid to be at school today.

During class at 10 a.m., North is hosting a walkout. I feel uncomfortable both supporting the walkout and staying inside the building. At the surface, it seems I have two options: be forced into a designated classroom or participate in something that was allegedly “student-run.”

I don’t like either, so I’m making my own: I’m leaving the campus. I’m having a parent call me out for that hour because I don’t feel safe with either of those two choices.

I don’t personally think I should have to leave school to feel protected. I think it’s ironic how this walkout was created to promote school safety, yet I feel obligated to leave the campus because I don’t feel safe.

Some students might walk out because they can get out of their lessons. Others might be peer-pressured into participating. I personally think this walkout was set up by the administration, then presented to students by students, giving students the impression it was created by their peers.

The administration and district spoke directly with fewer than 50 students in select student organizations — the groups with “the student leaders” — about how to handle this day. It doesn’t seem very fair for the rest of us: the majority. The bulk of the people who participate will be formed into a herd and shuffled out to the football field with “direction” from their peers.

I don’t feel comfortable participating in this walkout because of how the  administration approached this situation. When I first heard of the idea, I was excited to participate because I want to see action taken within schools. But once I found out the district was involved, I wanted nothing to do with it.

So now, because of the actions of adults in this youth movement, I don’t want to walk. But if I make that decision and choose to stay in school, I will be asked to go to a designated classroom. “This isn’t a political walkout,” yet I don’t want people to associate my staying inside with a political view. I understand administration is saying it’s a nonpartisan event, but people will still see it that way regardless.

I don’t feel comfortable participating in the walkout or being taken to a room full of judgment. So I will be leaving the campus to escape my only two options the school provided.  

I will be leaving so I don’t have to fear being at school. If this walkout is to promote school safety, then tell me why I’m leaving — so I feel safe?

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