This afternoon Mr. Williams’ 8th grade social studies class expressed a desire to create a small memorial on campus. They were prepared with chalk and a plan, and were fully supported by the faculty and the school in their endeavor to recognize the victims of this tragic event and voice their opinions in a peaceful way.
Our school’s goal is to help all of our students become active, engaged citizens. It is with this goal in mind that we encourage them to become voters and to be involved in their democracy. After all, they will be old enough to vote very soon. This is why we celebrate voter registration, elections, inaugurations, and all of the workings of our democracy at Academy at the Lakes.
At recent school assemblies, Mr. Heller addressed the students regarding our care for each other, our vigilance, and our practice of sharing when someone isn’t feeling welcome in our community. He also pledged to the students that their school will support them if they choose to express themselves through appropriate means.
At the same time, he also pledged to support those who choose not to.
Our teachers will not advocate for any particular political position. Rather, they will help our students learn how to navigate the processes of our democratic system, appropriately use their voices, and make their own choices.
As an example, Academy at the Lakes will support students if they want to write their legislators and deliver their letters in person. If students want to organize a rally or vigil, we will help them to appropriately express themselves.
As always, schoolwork is the main priority for Academy students. It is expected that a student’s primary job is to stay current with schoolwork and academic obligations. Teachers will continue to maintain their high expectations for every student.
Along with the memorial organized by the 8th graders, a small group of Upper Division students walked out of class around noon today. Teachers and administrators guided them toward developing a plan and translating their feelings into appropriate political action. The students returned to class with resolve to express themselves with greater clarity and purpose.
We are proud of our students and want to help them along their path toward becoming active, engaged citizens.