District guidelines on student walkouts

District guidelines on student walkouts and protests
Posted on 03/13/2018

Questions and Answers


Q: How will teachers respond if students get up and walk out of class as part of a planned student walkout/protest?

  1. Teachers will respond to the situation in the same way they would respond if any other student left class without permission, including recording the student as absent. Students who are late to class will be marked tardy.


Q: Will students be disciplined for participating in a walkout or protest?

  1. The district will follow normal disciplinary procedures regardless of the content or viewpoint being expressed through a walkout. Students will not be disciplined for the content of their speech, as students do not give up the right to free speech when they are in school. Rather, any disciplinary action will be consistent with district policy regarding disruption to the learning environment, unexcused absence, or tardy.


Q: Is an absence for a protest considered excused?

  1. Unless excused—such as a parent/guardian checking out their student so that they can participate in the walkout—district attendance policy will be followed and the absence will be marked unexcused.


Q: Can the protest occur on district property?

  1. The district cannot endorse a student walkout or protest that occurs during school hours, even if district staff happens to sympathize with the cause for which students are raising public awareness. Sanctioning one student walkout would mean the district would have to approve all student walkouts, in order not to discriminate against viewpoints. Additionally, district staff cannot engage in political speech or activities during the work day.

The district cannot be held responsible for the safety of students when they are off campus during a walkout. During such events, students and parents may observe an increased presence
of school administrators and law enforcement on
and surrounding the school campus.

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