Over 70 students participated in a sit-in against the Iraq War on All Saint's Day, Thursday, November 1st.
It began third hour when dozens of students gathered quietly in the lunchroom at Morton West High School and refused to leave. The administrators and police became involved immediately and locked down the school for a half hour after class ended. Students report that they were promised that there would be no charges besides cutting classes if they took their protest outside so as not to disturb the school day. The students complied, and were led to a corner outside the cafeteria where they sang songs and held signs while classes resumed.
Despite a police line set up between the protestors and the student body, many other students joined the demonstration. Organizers say they chose November 1st because it is the Christian holy day called the feast of All Saints and a national day of peace. They wrote a letter and delivered it to Superintendent, Ben Nowakowski, who was present at the time, stating the reason for their protest.
Deans, counselors and even the Superintendent tried to change the minds of a few, mainly those students with higher GPA scores to abandon the protest. The school called the homes of many of the protestors. Those whose parents arrived before the end of school and took their students home, or left before the protest ended at the final bell, received 3-5 days suspension. All others, an estimated 37 students, received 10 days suspension and expulsion papers. Parents report that Nowakowski stated those who are 17 will also face police charges.
More information and how you can help here. Please sign the petition in defense of the student protestors.
Thanks to my researcher-in-chief.