KALAMAZOO, Mich. (WOOD) — Students at Kalamazoo Central High School joined the national movement to walk out of school Wednesday morning.
At 10 a.m., nearly 1,600 students walked peacefully from the school to the nearby football stadium, where they sat in the stands and listened to various student speakers. The students observed 17 seconds of silence — one second for each person killed at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.
“Today, we remember the victims of gun violence,” student Olivia Jackson told the gathered crowd. “They walked similar halls, were taught similar things and had similar aspirations as us.”
After the walkout, several students said they felt empowered.
“We are the next generation,” said senior Jenna Bowker. “Soon we’re going to be running the government. We’re going to be in charge of who’s passing laws. We’re going to be the ones voting.”
Students returned to classes peacefully after the walkout, which lasted about 30 minutes.
In Grand Rapids, hundreds of students took part in a walkout.