Joliet West High School Freshman Defies School District

Joliet West High School freshman Jordyn Bew - md

High schools across the nation will be holding a school walk out to bring awareness to the gun debate. One local student is defying a school district and will participate in the walkout during class this Wednesday, March 14th. Joliet Township School District sent a letter to parents saying they do not condone a walkout.

But Joliet West High School freshman Jordyn Bew says she and 30 students at her school will walk out of class at 10am and go to the football field. She tells the Scott Slocum show that the school cannot authorize a walkout and it is not a student’s right to participate in civil disobedience. Bew disagrees. To hear the entire interview, click below.

Meanwhile, Joliet Township High School sent a letter to parents on Friday stating that 50 students and staff have planned JTHS’s response for a call to action. There will be a school sanctioned activity that students can participate in with 17 minutes of a video tribute, conversation, reflection through the hallways and campus. Student participation is voluntary. However if students choose to walk out of school they will be marked as an unexcused absence.

Here is a copy of the letter sent to parents.

Dear JTHS Families,

The recent tragedy in Florida and other tragedies in schools over the years have increased interest in student-led civic engagement efforts, including the idea of school walkouts.  Student leaders have expressed their commitment to work together to create their own engagement effort, titled #OurJT17.   

A group of over 50 students and staff met to plan JTHS’s response for a call to action that will begin on March 14 during the time a nationwide walkout is planned.  #OurJT17 campaign is unique to the values of our students and schools.  It is a 17-day challenge that honors the 17 victims who tragically lost their lives in Parkland, Florida, and a way for our students, staff, and community to advocate for violence-free schools. 

Is there a school-sanctioned activity that my students can participate in on March 14 at 10 a.m.?
·         Yes. On March 14 at 10 a.m., all JTHS students and staff will be given the opportunity to show our commitment to safe schools. 
·         For 17 minutes, there will be a combination of a video tribute, conversation, reflection, and students standing united, with their classmates, in the hallways throughout our campuses.
·         This will not stop there.  This is just the kickoff of our 17-day student led campaign, #OurJT17.  Additional information will be provided to students during lunch periods and social media.
·         Student participation in all aspects of this campaign is voluntary.
·         The schools will have support personnel available to provide emotional support to students and staff, as necessary.

How will JTHS respond if a student chooses to walk out of school?
·         Participation in a walkout during school hours is not a student right protected by the First Amendment.  JTHS does not condone or support a student walkout.
·         The planned #OurJT17 kickoff activities will continue.
·         Teachers will record the names of students who leave their supervision.
·         The student absence will be unexcused.
·         Students who are late to their following class will be marked as tardy (unexcused)
For more information, visit: #OurJT17 Challenge ​​​​​​​
 
To hear the interview with student Jordyn Bew click below.

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