WNC school districts share events and observances planned for National School Walkout Day
Several mountain school districts are planning events to coincide with National School Walkout Day on Wednesday, March 14, 2018.
Many schools and their students have opted to work together to hold memorial events, meet to discuss concerns, and offer students the option to stay in class if they don't wish to participate.
Students at Asheville High School will gather at 10 a.m., but wont leave campus.
Buncombe County Superintendent Tony Baldwin says students who want to participate on campus in high school and some middle schools will have that chance to remember Parkland survivors and talk about school safety. Buncombe County Schools reminds parents that if their high school student does want to leave school tomorrow, they need to be checked out.
In Henderson County, schools will provide designated areas within each campus for students to assemble starting at 10 a.m., with increased law enforcement at each area.
Students at Brevard High School and Rosman High School have asked their administrators to schedule optional events on Wednesday, March 14, 2018. At or about 10 a.m. at both schools, students will have the option of remaining in class or move to an agreed-upon area of the school grounds for a gathering to last about 17 minutes. Events at the high schools are not open to the public.
The Brevard College student and faculty walkout will be at 10 a.m. Community members are welcome to meet students at the Bell Tower.
Bill Nolte, Haywood County Schools Assistant Superintendent, says student leadership and student club leaders will hold a memorial service at their high schools, beginning at 10 a.m. Nolte says that students who want to stay in class can do so, and along with students, there will be faculty, guidance counselors and additional law enforcement.
Nolte says their goal is not to be political, but to show support of the lives lost.
Brian Oliver, the executive director of administration for McDowell County Schools, says that high school students plan to hold a memorial service at 10 a.m.
Toby Burrell, public information officer for Swain County Schools says there is no event planned district-wide.
Kimberly Elliott, superintendent of Jackson Co. Schools says that student councils will hold a memorial service at 10 a.m. It will last 17 minutes, in honor of the 17 students killed in Parkland, Fl.
The service will include speeches about the importance of the 17 lives lost, school shootings and the need for safety and mental health and the need for more mental health services in schools, along with actions Jackson County Schools have done to make schools safer.
In conjunction with the 10 a.m. memorial, three joint student council leaders will meet with the Jackson County School Board at 6 p.m. in the auditorium of Smoky Mountain High School to discuss their concerns during a Student Voices Board listening session.
Elliott says Jackson County Schools is proud of their student leaders for their role in assisting in student safety.
Chris Baldwin, superintendent of Macon County Schools said principals at individual schools will handle the requests by students to accommodate them. While there is no formal school system-wide memorial being planned, Baldwin said if students approached their principals wanting to do something similar, the principals would try to accommodate those requests.