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Area students to take part in national walkouts 19 years after Columbine

20 April 2018

Now the self-named "mass shooting generation" plans to walk out of school to commemorate that dark day, and to protest about how little has changed.

Ho-Shing said it's important to make sure minority voices are heard during the national push for gun reform that has been led by many of her classmates. Students were respectful and orderly throughout the 17 minutes, and remained focused on their intended goal of paying tribute to the loss of life in Florida. At Westport High, senior Briannah Lopes, 18, helped organize and is president of a new student group, Westport Safe and Sound, that focuses on school safety. The April walkout is organized by 16-year-old Lane Murdock, who attends Ridgefield High School in CT and told ABC News that she was inspired to action after the Parkland shooting.

Friday's walkouts come almost one month after rallies were held nationwide as part of the "March for Our Lives" movement, organized by survivors of the February 14 Parkland school shooting.

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Issued by Theresa Komitas, the district's director of communications and public relations, the statement reads: "Students who choose to leave school while it's in session on Friday, April 20 will receive disciplinary consequences, the same as any other day". Head organizers listed on the page are generally students. In addition to the walkout, students are planning to protest Friday evening at the Ohio Statehouse. "Student safety always remains our top priority".

In this March 14, 2018, file photograph, 15-year-old Leah Zundel waves a placard during a student walkout to protest gun violence on the soccer field behind Columbine High School in Littleton, Colo.

"If they decide to stay on campus and are not disruptive and re-enter the building cooperatively, that will likely be handled in the same manner as the walk out that occurred last month", Quattlebaum said.

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"We feel like we're helping other people since so many people gave support to us", she said.

Students are walking out of schools to protest inaction from lawmakers against gun violence.

Students are also asking the Shelby County School administration to improve mental and emotional health services in school, hire more guidance counselors and social workers, to expand their restorative justice practices, and to provide protection for students and their families from Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

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The National School Walkout is planned to start at 10 each time zone, with students leaving school to call for tougher gun laws. In many states it's more hard to register to vote than it is to buy a rifle.

Area students to take part in national walkouts 19 years after Columbine