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ConVal High School gun protesters get detention

Union Leader Correspondent

March 25. 2018 12:14PM
About 100 ConVal High School students in Peterborough who protested for stricter gun laws last week served detention for skipping class this week. (Meghan Pierce / Union Leader Correspondent)

PETERBOROUGH — About 100 ConVal High School students served detention this week for their Enough is Enough gun control walkout last week.

The students were given two detentions each, one for each block missed, and they had the option to serve one of three days this week, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

The detentions were only given to students who had left campus that day, not to any of the students who took part in the 17-minute walkout in the parking lot in memory of the 17 people who were killed in a school shooting in Parkland, Fla., on Valentine’s Day.

“That 17 minutes were set aside, but those other two blocks weren’t,” said ConVal High School student Emma Stacy, 14, of Peterborough who only participated in the 17-minute observance. The students who received detention walked off campus after that 17 minutes of silence and proceed to the Peterborough Town House for a rally and speeches. The students then walked to the town library to write letters to their legislators advocating stricter gun control laws.

Anna McGuiness, 17, of Hancock, was one of the ConVal students who helped organize the protest that lasted until the end of the school day.

McGuiness said students had been warned there would be consequences if they walked off campus.

“I do think it was fair of the school — we all skipped class and left school grounds, and according to the school handbook, those are actions that result in disciplinary action. I and the other students fully understand that ConVal had a responsibility to discipline us, and they were incredibly fair and flexible about how they went about it,” McGuiness said Thursday. “Although I think some students were surprised, I wasn’t. My discussions with administration made it clear to me that there would be discipline after the walk out.”

ConVal student Clara Quintanilha, 17, of Bennington said the detentions were unifying for the teens.

“The atmosphere actually wasn’t glum like we were punished or anything,” she said. “There was a sense that we were all there for the same reason. There was solidarity. It was kind of fun actually. … Totally worth the detentions. I would do it again.”

Education Politics Peterborough Gun Control

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