Thousands of area students will walk out of school today to protest gun violence

Many students at area middle schools and high schools will walk out of their classrooms today as part of a nationwide demonstration against gun violence.

The students will leave their classes for 17 minutes, one minute for each of the victims of the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla. a month ago. The event comes 10 days before major protests against gun violence across the country.

Students are scheduled to leave classrooms at 10 a.m. School administrators have been grappling with how to respond to the protests. Some districts have welcomed and supported the walkouts.

In the West Windsor-Plainsoboro school district, superintendent of schools Dave Aderhold, issued a strong statement in support of the students’ rights to protest. The district also posted a schedule of activities at each school. “Based upon conversations between student representatives and building administration, WW-P anticipates a sizeable walkout protest at all four secondary building,” Aderhold wrote last week. At  West Windsor-Plainsboro High North, the scoreboard will countdown the 17 minutes. At the end of the walk at both of the district high schools, several short speeches will be made by students to the student body.

At Princeton High School, students and staff can participate in a peaceful walkout. Following the 17-minute walkout, the school will offer an hour for related service activities, including advocacy, voter registration, class discussions and other student-generated activities. At John Witherspoon Middle School, students and staff can show their support and solidarity for the Parkland community by joining together for a 17-minute walk. The students will form a heart once outside. Students at both schools who choose not to participate in the walkout or service projects can read, reflect or study independently, school officials said.

Students at the Princeton Charter School have also organized a walkout. a teach-in will follow the walkout.

Several hundred students at Princeton University are also participating in the “We call BS: Princeton Rally for Gun Reform” at noon today.

Students, email your walkout photos to editor @ planetprinceton.com or tag us on Instagram @ prinpics. Don’t forget to list which school the photo is from and how the tagline and credit should read. Thanks

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