Oakville High student explains why students walked out of class

Letters+to+the+editor

To the editor:

  The March 14 walkout was more than just a walkout for me and the other students at Oakville High School. We as students want to feel safer at school and we want an environment where we don’t have to worry about things like shootings and break-ins.

  On the day of the walkout, we all met in the cafeteria at 9:30 and wrote letters to our U.S. senator. We spoke with Mrs. (Jan) Kellerman, the principal at Oakville, about what we can do as a school to make the students feel safer. There were so many simple suggestions that could make students feel safer.

  The students of Oakville have also organized a mental health awareness club where students can come talk to us and can seek out help if they need it. When we walked out of the school for 17 minutes, I couldn’t have been more proud of myself and my fellow students. The 17 minutes of silence was taken so seriously and everyone stayed so quiet.

  Simple things can be done to fix the way students feel at school.

I suggested that when entering the building and buzzing in that students should show their ID to the buzzer. I also said that teachers or administrators should be posted at the doors in the morning.
  I think that the students should know the code word for when there is an intruder in the building, because all the teachers lock their doors and then what happens to the kids who are in the bathroom, in the hallways, or eating lunch?

  The teachers get seminars on what to do, but I think those seminars should be brought to the students as well.

  I believe that guns aren’t the problem, but it’s the people who are using them. We are hoping that the mental-health awareness club can help. The students can learn the warning signs and be able to reach out to those people that need help.

  We want to be the kids that grab the person that sits alone at lunch and we want to be the kids that stand up for the kid who is getting bullied. Mental health is such a taboo these days, and we want kids to be able to come talk to us to find answers.

Maddie Talley
 Oakville High School senior