There was passion, politics, and the call for future action as hundreds of thousands gathered in Washington for the “March for Our Lives” on March 24. The event was organized by students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., where 17 students and educators were killed on Valentine’s Day when a former student opened fire with an assault-style weapon.
The crowd jammed Pennsylvania Avenue from near the White House to the Capitol on Saturday, carrying signs that read “Never Again,” “Am I Next?,” and “I Belong in a School Zone, Not a War Zone.”
Education Week spoke with teachers and students who had traveled from around the country to show solidarity and, as one person put it, to see “power grow from pain.”
Students spoke of being afraid to go to school, and teachers insisted they should not have to carry guns into the classroom.
These short videos feature the voices of six educators with unique perspectives on the current gun debates:
Maryland teachers Tricia Hill and Amy Kelly feel that young people aren’t going to stop pushing for change, and the two plan to keep pushing right on with them.
Dan Rouco teaches math at Barbara Goleman High School in Miami-Dade County, Fla., and faced a class full of fearful students after the nearby Parkland shooting.
Jenny Alpizar teaches English at Florida’s Barbara Goleman Senior High School—about a half-hour from Parkland. She says gun control is long overdue. The 16-year veteran teacher added that the day she’s asked to carry a gun is the day she leaves the classroom.
Tampa, Fla., teacher Nicole Bates is an elementary school math specialist and says it’s not right that her students have to learn to barricade a door.
Vivian Bart, a 33-year veteran, teaches 4th grade at Hialeah Gardens Elementary School in the Miami-Dade district. She says there is no defense against an assault-style weapon.
- ‘March for Our Lives’ Draws Massive Crowds Pushing for Tighter Gun Restrictions
- Will ‘March for Our Lives’ Win the Stricter Gun Laws Students Demand?
- Educators Say ‘No Way’ to Trump’s Suggestion of Arming Teachers
- For the Record: Not All Educators Oppose Arming Teachers, Staff
- The Parkland School Shooting: Complete Coverage
A version of this news article first appeared in the Teaching Now blog.