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April 20 walkout marks 19 year anniversary of Columbine

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After another mass school shooting occurred on Feb. 14, teens decided they had enough. Following the tragedy which claimed 17 lives, many students from around the country sprung into action. They began planning nationwide school walkouts to honor the victims of all school shootings, as well as lobby for stricter gun laws.

The growing movement, which is called #NationalSchoolWalkout on social media, urges all high schoolers to participate. Students who choose to participate will walk out of their school from 10 a.m. until 10:17. This walkout was sparked after the Florida shooting, but it is also to remember the 19th anniversary of the Columbine shooting.

“It makes it easier for more kids to participate if they don’t feel like they are going to miss class,” junior Phoebe Lesk said. This is one of the main concerns with this walkout.

It is expected that at least 185,000 people will participate in the walkout, which just shows how important this issue is to young Americans. However, issues like student security and absence from class are being discussed.

“I will make accommodations and I believe we are changing the schedules to adapt to that,” math teacher Matt Hemenway said about some concern students have about missing class.

I think it will help the adults realize that the kids actually care about a change, it will help get their voice heard.”

— Noah Kunze

One of the main concerns among students is the time that they will have to take out of class to participate. Many students have been vocal to the fact that 17 minutes can be very hard, or sometimes not possible, to miss. Efforts from schools like Stillwater to accommodate the walkout have garnered praise from some participants, and criticism from others.

“I think they shouldn’t have changed the schedule because the protest is about causing a disturbance and breaking out of the norm to make a statement,” Lesk said.

Many students at Stillwater were disappointed in the way that SAHS planned for the upcoming walkout. They thought that the walkout should have caused an interruption to the typical schedule to emphasise the point of making a change.

“I think it will help the adults realize that the kids actually care about a change, it will help get their voice heard,” junior Noah Kunze said.

One way in which this movement is different than most in history is that it is run by the people who are most threatened by school shooters: the students themselves. The fact that this protest is organized by students give many people hope that it will garner more attention and help to cause stricter gun control.

“The students are in danger and the consequences are on us, so that’s why the students are protesting the adults and the government,” Lesk said.

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About the Writer
Ike Gunderson, Online Editor

Ike Gunderson is a podcast reporter at Stillwater Area High School and writes in News and Activities. When he isn't playing for the golf team, he's relaxing...


13 Responses to “April 20 walkout marks 19 year anniversary of Columbine”

  1. Max Kennedy on March 11th, 2018 8:59 pm

    I like how you expressed that it’s the students who are controlling this and sourced twitter for major accounts and leaders. Your fact paragraphs were very helpful in getting the “jist” of the story and the quotes coincided with your facts. Overall a solid article and was a very informative news article.

  2. Lilly Sample on March 12th, 2018 9:34 am

    This story is very timely and it gives students the information that they need regarding the walkout. The writer did a great job of keeping it a News piece and not an Opinion piece.

  3. Benjamin Valerius on March 12th, 2018 9:59 am

    I liked the fact paragraphs and the overall informative nature of the article. The only critique I might add is to research a little more about the event as I think some of the facts you provided are about the March 14th walkout and not necessarily being applied to the April 20th one.

  4. Evelyn Young on April 12th, 2018 11:28 am

    I am glad that this topic was covered. I had heard some confusion among students about what the April 20th walkout was about. This article clarified any lingering questions some students might have had about this walkout. The links were also informative which is helpful since these are nationally discussed topics. Also the alt copy was very unique and well done but hard to read at some points on the timeline. Otherwise both were very well written.

  5. Kaitlyn Kirby on April 22nd, 2018 2:05 pm

    This article was very well written and organized nicely. It had very good quotes throughout the story and it was interesting to hear about how the walkout may cause issues with scheduling. There was also good facts throughout the story that went nicely with the quotes. I liked how the story ended with a strong quote.

  6. Rose Junko on April 22nd, 2018 10:55 pm

    Great article overall. Quotes and facts get what the story is about, but they don’t convey as much emotion as some people feel toward the topic. I like the alt. copy accompanying the story so students can get the facts about their options involved in this.

  7. Fotini Kloos on April 23rd, 2018 6:41 am

    I loved the Alt. copy timeline going with the story! It really gives people an interactive way to read the story and kind of go along with the events in the timeline! Nut graph is very informative and strong quotes are used! Could’ve used more info on the April 20th walkout like Ben said! Otherwise, its great!

  8. Emma Polucha on April 23rd, 2018 7:18 am

    This article has in depth research out into it. The reader really gets to know all the information in an effective way. It also shares what the students are doing because of how it’s affected them and I think that’s an important message to share.

  9. Grant Hietpas on April 23rd, 2018 10:10 pm

    Well done writing an article that was informative and fun to read while also staying neutral on a topic that typically creates a lot of emotional response.

  10. Daniel Schlenker on April 24th, 2018 7:49 am

    This story does a good job of sharing how many students feel about the events that have occurred. Along with the fact that this story is well written, it portrays the student’s feelings very well.

  11. Mikayla Cousineau on April 24th, 2018 8:42 am

    I thought that the interactivity in the alt copy brought a lot to the story. It was also very clean and easy to read which kept me hooked. The lead and nutgraph have great structure and provide relevant information before presenting the opinion of students. I liked the fact that a teacher’s perspective was shown, and both perspectives of students were represented. Well done!

  12. Aubrey Kelley on April 24th, 2018 9:09 am

    This story is very timely and reflected student opinions and how the student body is leading the activism and demanding change. I think the article is well written and very effective informing readers about events taking place and why they are taking place.

  13. Noah Pasiuk on April 24th, 2018 9:46 am

    I think this article really attached to the emotions of the reader. It really goes in depth of how the reader views the story. It is a very well written article

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