New Orleans students will take part in national school walkout

NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - Students across the country will protest gun violence Wednesday through organized walkouts. The demonstrations come on the one-month anniversary of the school shooting in Parkland, FLA.

Thousands of students in the New Orleans area will also take part, but some schools have their own take on the movement.

It's called "The ENOUGH National School Walk Out," and it will take place Wednesday morning from 10 a.m. until 10:17. That's one minute to honor each of the 17 victims killed in the recent massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. A number of different schools in our area will be taking part, including Homer A. Plessy, an elementary school.

"It's important we do it in an age-appropriate way that our parents support, so we've spoken a lot with our families. We've sent home sort of talking points about how we'd like to address it, and we've taken their feedback about what they're comfortable with," said Meghan Raychaudhuri, the acting head of Plessy School. "For our older kids, they spent today making their own protest signs, and they're going to have the opportunity to share their thoughts about this."

More than 35,000 students in Archdiocese of New Orleans Schools also plan to take a stand for peace. All of the schools have been asked to simultaneously hold 17 minutes of prayer.

"We don't support political protests or anything of that nature at the Diocese. We actually thought really hard about this. We prayed about this and decided we would turn to our faith. It's what we're trained to do as Catholics, and so we decided we would dedicate 17 minutes of prayer, one for each of the victims in the Parkland shooting," said Superintendent of Catholic Schools Dr. RaeNell Houston.

"Students had a tremendous response when this started circulating on social media. We reached out to the Archdiocese and to our campus ministry, and you know, we do a lot of things well here, and we tell our students one of the most powerful thing we do is come together as a community and pray, and that's exactly what we're going to do," said Archbishop Rummel High School Principal Marc Milano.

And at Plessy School, you will see sixth-graders carrying protest signs.

"We need gun control laws now, messages of sorrow and love and support for other schools who have been victims of school shootings, so we've been talking it through with them, we review the signs to make sure they're developmentally appropriate for the grades, and we're really excited about our students' commitment to social justice and really wanting to take part in this event," said Raychaudhuri.

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