Student Participation on 'Safe Climate Future' Day of Action on March 153/14/2019
Dear PPS Community,
As you might be aware, there is a growing international student-led movement that designates Friday, March 15, as a day for students all over the world to express their views on climate change. We understand that some students here locally in Portland are considering leaving school to attend an 11 a.m. rally at Portland City Hall.
While we recognize the right of students to assemble and demonstrate in support of their concerns and ideals, our role as educators is to ensure that our students are learning and to minimize disruptions in our classrooms. Our expectation is that students remain safe in school actively engaged in their classes.
We encourage families to have a discussion with their students and to come to an understanding about participation in any student-led off-campus activities. Everyone should be aware that if students choose to leave school they will be marked absent and that the district cannot ensure their safety if they leave campus. Please know that PPS administration will do its best to monitor student activity, but it cannot effectively supervise every student who chooses to leave campus for a non-school-sponsored event.
We encourage students to express their views through discussions, research, lobbying, petitions and demonstrations outside the school day. We also encourage teacher-facilitated in-class discussions during the school day, especially as they relate to learning standards in science and social studies. If there is information about activities specific to your school, you can expect to hear from your principal.
We will continue to do all we can to ensure our schools are safe, welcoming and supportive for everyone. We also understand that our students are leaders and that they have critical thoughts to share about their future and about the world around them.
Thank you for your support and understanding,