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And yet another School Protest Disguised as Fire Drill

Mike Peer

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Protest or fire drill? That is the question

Posted on Wednesday, March 14, 2018 at 5:11 pm




Students at North Middle School gather near the campus’ flag Wednesday as part of an optional nationwide walkout in remembrance of the 17 students who died in the Feb. 14 Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting in Florida. The walkout has been controversial with sides divided over increasing gun control measures. The action at Franklin County High School was in the form of a fire drill, giving students the option to stand for or against increased gun control.

—Staff Photo by Sam Cowan



With more than 3,000 walkouts held nationwide Wednesday to demand action on gun violence, the setting amid the Franklin County School System was different.

Students at the local level were allowed the opportunity to protest at the discretion of the individual schools.

However, in Franklin County High School’s case, enough students did not want to participate in the nationwide movement, so a required monthly fire drill was scheduled at the 10 a.m. walkout starting time to give those who wanted to protest the opportunity, according to Principal Dr. Roger Alsup.

The nationwide measure called for standing in honor for 17 minutes — one minute for each of the dead in the Feb. 14 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida.

One FCHS senior spoke up for himself and many of his peers who chose not to be a part of the protest.

“I want everyone to know that what happened at FCHS was actually a fire drill,” he said. “I don’t want anyone to believe that I participated in the walkout which I think is useless, stupid. I really want no part of it.

“Because of the ‘fire drill,’ all students were forced to walk outside, and it made it appear we were all participating in the walkout. I’m pretty sure I should have a right to not participate in the walkout if I don’t want to, but I feel like I was forced to because the fire drill conveniently happened right about the exact time the national walkout was scheduled.”

Pick up a copy of the March 16th edition of the Herald Chronicle to read the rest of this story or subscribe to have the news delivered straight to your mailbox or computer by calling 931-967-2272. 








Students at Franklin County High School, upper photo, and South Middle School, lower photo, gather on campus outside their buildings during a 10 a.m. Wednesday fire drill that was being held simultaneously as a nationwide walkout in tribute to the fallen 17 students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida. Due to the controversy surrounding gun control related to the issue, students were given the option to protest. A fire drill was called at the high school because many students did not want to protest the gun control initiative.

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