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Langston Hughes Middle School Students Stage Walkout

by RestonNow.com April 23, 2018 at 1:30 pm 29 Comments

Roughly 200 students participated in a walkout on Friday (April 21) at Langston Hughes Middle School (11401 Ridge Heights Road).

The walkout was in honor of the anniversary of 13 victims of the Columbine High School shooting.

Students left the school building at 10 a.m.. Most students re-entered the building and returned to fifth period class while a small group of students remained to continue the walkout.

Below is a message from Langston Hughes Middle School Principal Aimee Monticchio:

FCPS respects the rights of our students to engage in peaceful protest and express their opinions through speech and other ways as long as it is done respectfully, does not interfere with the rights of others, and does not disrupt learning in the school.   Our school is committed to providing an environment where everyone is treated with respect and encouraged to help others.

Our teachers, administrators and staff continue to reinforce a sense of positive school community focused on teaching and learning in our increasingly complex world.  We thank you for your continued partnership in working with your child to discuss meaningful actions that they can take to engage in studies of all issues and participate fully in their community.

Similar walkouts happened at the school on February 21 and on March 14 in order to remember the victims of a shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.

File photo

  • Mike M

    At what point can we start to call this DNC agitation programming what it is? Do we need, say, eight of these a year? Or would ten do the job? Political manipulation of Junior High School kids is sickening. It’s brainwashing.

    • 30yearsinreston

      At the time when the NRA will stop their ludicrous assertions that battlefield and law enforcement weapons are a constitutional right
      They reality is that their ‘executives” are getting rich by mining this meme
      Since you mentioned “brainwashing”

      • Chkitout1

        It’s a shame our school systems exploit our children like this. They should focus their energy on giving our children a good education which will allow our children to make good decisions when they get older.

        • BDW

          Yes, it is terrible that the schools are allowing children to exercise their constitutional rights and their civic duty to be informed and act civilly on their views and desire to live to adulthood. It would be so much better if they followed the authoritarian and conservative viewpoint of “do what I say under fear of imprisonment regardless of what I do” status quo.

          • Chkitout1

            Make scholars, not activists. We have an abundance of activists in our country and a critical shortage of scholars. Let’s focus more on making scholars.

          • Langston Parent

            Why not both? My student there walked out but also has straight As, takes high school level classes, and is in the National Junior Honor Society. Why do we make everything mutually exclusive. Also, for the record, to all those complaining of missed instructional time – the walkout was during their “Connections” time period, which is basically homeroom and when they can work on what they want to.

          • Anonymous Person

            That Connections time period, honestly, sounds like a waste of time. Turn it into a recess and let them go outside and run around or something then. But generally study halls aren’t very useful nor have much of an impact on a child’s education.

          • Chkitout1

            I commend your child for being a straight A student, however; I’m sure not all the other students who walked out were straight A students. I have no problem with students exercising their constitutional rights, after school. School time should be used to foster education not student activism.

          • OneReally

            Maybe one of two kids. The rest are just skipping class.

          • Anonymous Person

            I would have joined in the bandwagon to get out of class too.

            I also would give the side eye to any adult that says they wouldn’t ever think of latching onto the flimsiest excuse to skip class.

          • Mike M

            They are not just allowing it, I think they are suggesting and facilitating. Adults are behind it. It is political manipulation of kids.

            You might want to ask yourself why Conservative parents aren’t “suggesting” and “enabling” their kids to walk on for Second Amendment rights? You might want to think about that one. Your authoritarian strawman is not a reality. NO ONE IS telling these kids to do anything Conservative.

        • 30yearsinreston

          What a crock

      • Mike M

        I am not a member of the NRA and I find that assertion not at all ludicrous. It doesn’t become so just because you said it. The point was these kids aren’t old enough to have an informed opinion and they are being manipulated into protest. There is the brainwashing, largely based on fear mongering.

        Your implication that only agents of the government should be armed with man-killing ability is precisely what the Second Amendment was to defend against. I am sorry if you find that frightening. (PS: Define battlefield and law enforcement weapons.)

  • Dave

    It is the blind leading the blind. Notice how the school is ranked so low compared to schools in Great Fall, which is right next door.

    • Adrian Havill

      Great Falls. Study hard.

    • 30yearsinreston

      its the alive wanting to stay alive and not be dead

      • Facilities check

        It’s clear the right to assemble was developed in a simpler time and the founding father’s couldn’t anticipate today’s political climate and how it can be used to manipulate our children. The right to assemble must be reigned in!!!!!

        Please think of the children!

    • guest

      Where did you read actual fact based data that said students from Langston ranked “so low”? As a parent of a child that attends Hughs, I’m offended by this blanket statement. There are roughly 1000 students that attend this school and around 200 of them chose to protest. While my child was not one of the ones that chose to protest, students choosing to protest should not be demeaned. Its a sad day when an adult attacks middle school children. I’m unsure how a peaceful protest relates to a school ranking, but I can tell you that my student has been receiving a quality education there. Their AP and IB program is wonderful(my student is in this program) and there are a ton of teachers, counselors, and staff there that care about the students and do an outstanding job teaching them.

      As a previous school nurse I also tell you that in a school like Hughs where there are a number of ESL students you can not base a school ranking solely on test scores, because those with English only homes have an advantage. There is also those that face test anxiety. So again, where can I find the data that supports your blanket statement?

      • Anonymous Person

        I think most folks here who disagree with this being a good thing don’t blame the students, but rather blame the school administration who encouraged or condoned this activity.

        Children in middle school are starting to think things through for themselves, but they are generally not yet at an age to have a fully formed, coherent opinion on large world ideas or events. This isn’t a slight against them, it’s simply the stage of their development they’re within.

        It seems clear to me that the school administration tacitly endorses this political action and is using the student body as a means of endorsing their views, and wasting tax dollars in doing so by not properly using time that should be spent in the classroom or in otherwise some kind of instruction. I’m sure we’ll once again hear about the funding problems in the school district, even though the administration is wasting these children’s time with this.

        • guest

          Thank you for your reply and for your point of view. I actually agree with some of the things you stated in your reply. My response and disagreement was based on the response from Dave regarding the actual school. I believe that type of comment is out of line and not fact based. Thank you again for the reply and stating how you view this matter in a constructive way. Have a great evening

    • guest

      I guess all those students walking out of Ivy League colleges, students
      from Bethesda/Chevy Chase, Loudon/Ashburn, etc also rank low? I guess
      all the students from Great Falls and all over the US that attended that March for Our Lives march in DC also attend low ranking schools?

      And here I thought school rankings were based on pass/graduation rates, funding, violence in the school, drug use(a McClean Middle School was just in the news about a large number of students in the boys rest room doing drugs while their parents stood on the news blaming the school last month), gangs, teen pregnancy, student teacher ratio, etc.

    • guest

      Btw, just saw a wonderful news story about the “low ranking” Hughs on this page. Make sure to read the story and leave a comment. It’s amazing what such a “low ranking” school can do

  • Arielle in NoVA

    I’m impressed! I think they were more active than the high schoolers this round.

    • Mike M

      Just imagine how impressive kindergartners would be acting out this way.

  • RoadApples

    Congrats/support to those who support/walked out in solemn remembrance for the Columbine High School victims.
    That being said: beware of predators that might be using your ‘sincere’ condolences in order to advance their ‘agendas’. Personal freedom/thought is one of the linchpin building blocks for the past/future success of the United States. Please do not become a lemming for ‘any’ political agenda.

    • Mike M

      Too late.

  • Anonymous Person

    So what’s more important, allowing students to walk out of school to protest/remember an event that they weren’t alive for, or instruction time? Are we paying taxes to fund protests or instructional time?

    Don’t feed me the BS story that them learning to protest is instructional time. If that were true, then our educational attainment wouldn’t be one of the lowest in the developed world. How many French, Canadian, or Japanese schools are teaching their students how to walk out of school to protests/remember events that happened before they were born?


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