Countless high schools and middle school students left their classroom, teachers, and work behind to stand in solidarity with the Parkland High shooting victims and activists on March 14th.

After the Walkout Planning Call, we gave out $100 gift cards to Triangle and Triad high school students planning walkouts.

On March 14th, YOI staff came to Martin Middle School’s walkout, organized by one of our Freedom School graduates, Cece.

Several of our NC Heat Fellows organized walkouts at their schools as well, including Eden at School of Science and Math in Durham and Jayla at Leesville High in Raleigh. You can read more about the latter here on the  school’s newspaper.

A few of the high school students who attended our Walkout Planning Call and received gift cards us sent us updates on their walkouts! Here’s what they had to say about their powerful, student-led actions.

Alex from East Mecklenburg High School in Charlotte: “The East Meck walk out was certainly a day to be remembered on our campus. To our surprise, our entire cafeteria patio was filled with activists making their voices heard, to the point where it was difficult to move through the crowd. The energy present that day was indescribable- from the signs people were waving (sponsored by the YOI), to the fiery chants, to the impromptu speakers who touched everyone’s hearts with their passionate words. Our walk out made the front page of our school newspaper this quarter, continuing out message of standing up for what you believe in. I left the East Meck walk out feeling inspired. Inspired by my peers, my school district, and every other student in the United States that took a stand.

These photos were taken by East Meck yearbook photographer, Emily Robinson.”

Merel from Panther Creek High School in Cary: “Our school has about 2,700 kids and we had a large majority come in. We had teachers and school staff present to make sure everything ran smoothly. We had a moment of silence for the students in Parkland. Students from every grade level spoke about the issue of gun violence and what we as students can do to enforce change. It was very powerful seeing everyone in the school wearing orange and coming out to this event.”




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