Iowa Students Participate in Walk Outs Today

posted by WMT News / KCRG-TV9 -

MARION, Iowa (KCRG-TV9) -- On Friday, April, 20, hundreds of thousands of students are expected to walk out of their schools around the country to protest gun violence.

The national walkout also coincides with the anniversary of the mass shooting at Columbine High School in 1999, a shooting which killed 13 people.

Walkout organizers say elected leaders haven't done enough since then.

The walkout will also include a moment of silence for the victims of Columbine.

Students from Linn-Mar High School will gather at City Square Park in Marion at 10:00 a.m.

They will make their way to City Square Park to honor the victims of Columbine and Parkland.

We spoke with Kevin Drahos, he's a Junior from Linn Mar High School and he's also organizing the event happening on Friday.

Drahos wants to make sure this march is geared towards lawmakers because he tells he hasn't seen any real changes in federal gun laws to protect students.

"We are frustrated especially since it's been two months since Parkland, it's been 19 years since Columbine and why have we not seen a change, especially when we're losing lives, you know you would think that your lawmakers are concerned with this issue cause we're losing so many lives from gun violence," Kevin Drahos, a junior at Linn-Mar High School and organizer of the walkout event.

School officials will be allowing students to leave, but they are giving out an "unexcused absence" to those who do.

Students taking part in the march will leave Linn Mar High School at 10 a.m.

They will then walk down 10th street and head to City Square Park in Marion where several speakers will address the crowd and demand the need for action.

Classes will still continue as normal during the march.

Jeff Gustason, the principal of Linn-Mar High School tells us his students have already informed him that they would be participating on Friday.

"They are learning that they have a voice and they have a say no matter what their beliefs are and I think that's really important if we're going to live in a democracy, we've got to have active participants in that," says Gustason.

He also tells us that parents were notified that this event would be happening.

Linn-Mar High School will also be working with the Marion Police Department in order to make sure their students are safe if they are participating in the march.

Walkouts are also expected to take place in Waterloo, Cedar Falls, and in Iowa City.

Iowa City Schools will not be in session, but students are still expected to make a stance against gun violence.

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