Leftists at the propaganda outlet Vox asked the question, can students be suspended for walking out of class and demanding their Constitutional rights be taken?
Because the walkout is scheduled during school hours, it has triggered confusion about how teachers and principals should respond. Do students have a right to protest when they should be in class? And are schools allowed to punish students who participate?
Part of the confusion stems from the fact that the answer to both those questions is “yes, to some extent.” Students at public schools have a right to express their political views, but schools have the right to place limits on how they express those views to ensure they don’t disrupt the learning process. Schools can even suspend students in some cases (more on that below).
Civil liberties groups are worried that some schools might be going too far in their punishment threats — potentially infringing on students’ constitutional rights. The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) in Nevada warned school administrators across the state about this last week after hearing reports that some had threatened to withhold students’ diplomas and kick students off sports teams for participating in the walkout.
So the answer is Yes, if you’re willing to face the possibility of a lawsuit. Otherwise, a student can exercise their Constitutional right to demand their Constitutional rights be taken away.
But can you be suspended for not wanting to demand your rights be taken away?
Yes you can.
A high school student in Hilliard, Ohio, didn’t want to pick sides in the contentious gun debate surrounding Wednesday’s “National Walkout,” so he stayed in class instead of joining the largely anti-gun protest or an alternative “study hall.”
Hilliard Davidson High School senior Jacob Shoemaker was then reportedly slapped with a suspension.
The student argued that divisive politics have no place in America’s schools and he refused to take sides in the debate, according to the Associated Press.
Shoemaker’s suspension citation was posted online, possibly by a friend, and the story quickly went viral.
“Student refused to follow instructions after being warned repeatedly by several administrators,” the letter said. “Student not permitted on school property.”
School district spokesperson Stacie Raterman said official policy prohibited school officials from leaving Shoemaker unattended in the building for “security reasons,” 10TV reported.
While Shoemaker said he didn’t expect for his actions to generate so much attention, he is prepared to accept the consequences of his decision.
Mr Americana, Overpasses News Desk
March 16th, 2018