By Maria Leonino
Mon March 19 the Board of Education had a meeting discussing the student lead walkout. Board members included Gerry Bettio, Lisa-Johnson Bowers, David Licate, Kelly Toppin and Jason Witacre.
Principals, teachers, students and parents gathered to listen to the board talk about their views on the walkout. Many students spoke, including Student Council President, Moriah Payne.
Payne was in charge of leading the walkout. She wanted to make sure she made a point to say the purpose of the walkout was to promote safety.
“Four out of five board members responded with amazement at the respect of the student body and congratulated us for handling the issue so maturely,” Payne said.
Along with promoting safety, the student walkout served as a memorial for previous shootings and to empower the students for the change they can make in the world.
Payne, along with the other students who led the walkout, wanted to show students that they can come together to overcome the political differences for a common cause.
There was backlash from the community about the walkout, and the Board of Education wanted to have more interaction with the students leading up to the walkout.
Overall, Payne wanted the board to know it was not her nor the students intention to disobey the rules of the district.
“We know we cannot change the minds of everyone, but we would appreciate the consideration that our intentions were not to debate the 2nd amendment, but rather to demonstrate the power of the 1st amendment,” Payne said.
In response to Payne’s speech, Board of Education member, Jason Witacre pitched an idea of students being more involved with the community and the board.
Witacre feels if students were to organize a committee linked to the board, it could help prevent further complications with events in the district.