Local schools prepare for nationwide walkout

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — In response to the Florida school shooting, a nationwide walkout is planned for Wednesday. Students in the Midstate plan to participate.

“They are obviously impacted by the emotion of what’s happening across our country,” said Laurie Wade, Hershey High School Assistant Principal.

Hershey middle and high school are holding a handful of unity activities on Wednesday. Instead of walking out of school, students and staff will walk into the hallway and link arms to show their support.

“I think the point of it is that we are in fact united. We all want to have a voice against violence. There really is no other argument,” said Wade.

Catholic schools in the Harrisburg diocese will mark the one month anniversary of the shooting with prayer and reflection. Some students voiced concern about the safety of a walk out.

“Walking out of a building at a predicted time, on a predicted date, if someone is out there with a mind to react negatively to this, are we putting ourselves in jeopardy?” diocese spokesman Joe Aponick said.

Waynesboro School District in Franklin County is calling on parents to encourage their kids to stay in school.

The ACLU says students should not face harsher penalties for walking out. Colleges and universities across the country say they will ignore any punishments students receive.

“The best thing schools can do is to give students the space to participate in civic engagement and express themselves around the issues that they care about,” said Andy Hoover of the Pennsylvania ACLU.

Other schools in the Midstate are letting their students plan and lead the walkout. Those districts say they will have additional security outside of schools during that time.

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