In response to the recent Florida shooting, students have been demanding gun control through protests. In less than a month, students have organized a national school walkout. Across the nation, at 10 AM on March 14th, students will walkout and stand for 17 minutes to honor those lost in the Parkland shooting, and to protest current gun laws. Students are furious at the refusal from congress to enforce more gun control, so they are taking a stand. Several adults, from teachers to celebrities, have commended survivors of the shooting- and all students taking a stand- for using their voices to take action.
Though certain schools will be penalizing their students for participating in the walkouts, Sandia isn’t one of them. Sandia has an official walkout event according to the organizer’s website, www.actionnetwork.org. The walk out has been promoted on the announcements for about three weeks, and is being publicized on the Sandia website. Teachers across campus have been informing students what the walkout consists of, though they aren’t allowed to encourage them. Students are asked to wear maroon and gather on the soccer field.
Update- March 15th
On Wednesday March 13th, students from thousands of schools walked out at 10 AM, and Sandia was one of them. As promised, hundreds students conjugated into a large S on the soccer field, with cones and directors that aided the formation of the S. During the walkout, there were several speakers, including people in the student body and Mr. D’anza. There was upward of 20 people holding signs, which had statements such as “save lives not guns”, “it could’ve been us”, and “#never again.” Students held these signs up for a remote controlled drone that was taking photos of the event, and for their peers to see. Many students took the walkout seriously and were prepared to stand there for what they believe in, but several were not. In several cases students complained that their peers weren’t taking the walkout seriously, “they just wanted to get out of class and didn’t get the meaning in it”, and were being loud and disrespectful. For some, it was difficult to see and hear the speakers due to the sheer volume of participants fulfilling the walkout. But others heard inspiring statements such as “ We have to hit the ground running. Right now, we’ll be silent, and then, we’ll make change.” After the speeches, those participating in the walkout took a moment of silence to honor the victims of the Stoneman Douglas shooting.
There were several security guards posted around the soccer field which seemed to cause concerned conversation among students. The walkout even attracted the attention of people outside the Sandia community, as a few runners and people on bicycles stopped to watch. The walkout was extremely well organized, with care taken from administration and the student body to ensure that it went smoothly.