Students across the country staged walkouts today to honor the victims of the Parkland, Florida shooting and to call for safer schools and gun reform. KNAU’s Justin Regan spoke with some kids at Flagstaff High School.
Students gathered somberly on the football field, as the names of the Parkland victims were read out loud. Student speakers called for vigilance, compassion and legislative action. Josh Vallecillo is a senior at Flagstaff High School.
"I’m also representing my little sister because she’s in elementary school right now," says senior Josh Vallecillo. "Also for Florida because I don’t want this event to happen again."
Some students met with local leaders earlier in the day to discuss school safety. For junior Tori Noenickx, the wave of student activism makes her feel empowered.
"People always say ‘You’re kids. You don’t know what you’re talking about'," says Noenickx. "But we know better than anyone because we are in school systems and we know how things are run. In my life, I’m 17, I’ve lived through Las Vegas, Sandy Hook and now the shooting in Parkland. Enough is enough."
Walkouts were held across the state at many schools, in Phoenix, Page, Winslow and elsewhere. A nationwide march for school safety is planned for later in the month.