Last week Wednesday was ‘Walkout’ day where schools nation wide joined in the protest to push for more gun-control. Most of these said schools involved students in the teens, except for one.
A New London school had their kindergarteners walkout and chant “we love school,” “honk your horn,” to show support of “school safety.”
Harbor Elementary School claims the demonstration was about school safety, however parents weren’t notified of the walkout calling to question the actual safety of the children.
“It was discussed, it was a safety march and we took them out and they chanted ‘we love school’ and ‘honk your horn.’ And we told them that the 17 angels are above in heaven, they’re watching down and they’re proud,” one parent, Olga Vokolou, said to the local news network.
This mother was involved and chaperoned the walkout, which took place on school grounds. According to Vokolou, the teacher announced the demonstration via Facebook.
“My opinion as a parent, they do shooting drills so we also want to make sure they know we’re going to keep their school safe,” Vokolou said.
Dr. Stephen Tracey, New London’s Interim Superintendent, had no issue with the “safety message,” but the teacher failed to notify and seek approval from him and the principal, and no written permission was given by the parents.
“When you’re going to do something like that, in connection with something that, let’s face it, is controversial, you need to seek the approval of the principal and the parents before you involve 5-year-olds in something like that,” Tracy said.
Via NBC Connecticut: Another parent, Marlinda Robinson, said she didn’t know her kindergartner was participating in a march but said she didn’t have any issues with the message.
“I would have liked to know, but not for the reason of what it stood for. More because I just didn’t know,” Robinson said.
One student’s grandmother, Helene Thomas, said she found out about the march through word-of-mouth.
The video drummed up some negative opinions from parents at the school.
“It’s kind of a safety issue, too, to have the kids file out of the class in an organized manner,” said father Sebastian Larrea. His child is in pre-K and did not participate in the walkout.
Harbor Elementary’s crossing guard Joyce Powers said she saw the children escorted in two lines by teachers who were carrying signs that read “enough.”
“I thought it was pushing it with that age group. I don’t think they understood what was actually happening,” Powers said.
The interim superintendent has spoken with the two teachers involved, however he did not disclose if disciplinary measures were pursued.
“Suffice it to say, lessons were learned and I consider the matter closed,” Tracy said.
Board of Education member Jason Catala, the chair of the board’s Policy Committee, said a number of policies were ignored and called for the school’s principal to resign.
Catala also plans to take up the policies regarding field trips and leaving the building at the next Board of Education meeting.
Tracy called it inappropriate for a member of the board to evaluate the performance of a school employee and hopes for an apology.
Catala said there will be more to come out about this incident that he’s not at liberty to discuss at this time.
Did the two teachers involved exploit these kindergarteners to push gun-control? Give us your thoughts below.