Wednesday, March 14, 2018

#NationalWalkOut Thoughts

As an educator that has spent time teaching Civics and Thoreau's Civil Disobedience. While there are plenty of schools that were supportive of the students taking a stand on school violence and chose not to punish these students, I am very proud of the students that were willing to accept punishment for their stance. Threats of punishment are an all to common way for schools to control students. Looking those consequences in the face and leaving class because they felt this was an issue that mattered is brave and should be recognized as such. If you don't think it is brave, you have forgotten what it is like to be a teenager and the pressures to conform.

Our history is littered with examples of non-violent acts of civil disobedience to, hopefully, force change. At times, it has been the only way to make change. I'm not sure where my former students are in their life, but I hope they remember the conversations we had while discussion Thoreau. The greatest revolutions can start with one person refusing to sit down when told. These students are refusing to sit and be silent. Despite efforts from people around the country that want the students to speak when spoken to, this generation of students written off as narcissistic, phone obsessed snow flakes, are going to shout their displeasure with the status quo and then they will speak with their vote.

For educators, we are not surprised to see these students doing these great things on their own. We've seen it in them and many of us have supplied them with skills to make change. These are our children and I couldn't be prouder of them.


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