Dear Shaker Schools Community,
We are writing you about a planned student/teacher walkout at the High School designed to call attention to school safety issues and to commemorate and honor the 17 victims of the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. This student-led initiative is scheduled for Wednesday, March 14, 2018, and will last for 17 minutes. Participating students plan to silently leave the High School at 10 a.m. and walk to the turf field at the stadium. In the days prior to the event, there will be opportunities for students to sign a banner and write letters to Ohio lawmakers. We anticipate that school districts across the nation will stage similar events the same day.
Both the District and the Shaker Heights Teacher Association endorse and support this action and encourage our students to be advocates. Shaker has a long, rich history of student and community activism, and we encourage students to get involved in issues about which they are passionate. However, we have also asked our students to work in coordination with our teachers, administrators and staff to ensure a safe and constructive event. Representatives from our PTO, the City of Shaker Heights, the Police Department and the Fire Department will be involved with supporting the event, and we assure our families that there will be security and adult supervision of students during this brief walkout.
Please note that students at our elementary schools, as well as our students at Woodbury and the Middle School, will not walk out and will have a normal school day. We are working with our individual schools to determine age-appropriate actions for those respective grade levels. Each school will provide correspondence about their advocacy efforts with their respective school communities.
While the District and the SHTA strongly support this action at our High School, we will respect and support any student or teacher who does not want to participate. There will be supervision and support for students who choose to stay in the building during this brief, 17-minute period.
Dr. Gregory C. Hutchings, Jr., Superintendent
Mr. Jeff Isaacs, Shaker Heights School Board President
Mr. Jonathan Kuehnle, Shaker Heights High School Principal
Dr. John Morris, SHTA President