WPCNR School Days. By John F. Bailey. March 14, 2018 UPDATED 12 NOON E.D.T.:
In a demonstration completely organized by 3 White Plains High students, deploring the murder of the 17 students shot in cold blood two weeks ago in the Parkland Florida high school, an school district estimated 1,000 students (half the 2,039 high school enrollment) assembled on the green in front of White Plains High this morning at 10 A.M. to join the national student mourning and demand for action on gun control from the country’s leaders.
They began on time (10 A.M.) in the cold mourning wind. They walked single file out of the high school main entrance and the single file of young people carrying signs, gained momentum and turned into a growing orderly enmasse surge of America’s future filling the lawn of the school filling the green from the windows on the north of the high school, spilling over the sidewalk entrance of wall-to-wall students to around the south, windowed edge of the circular high school library where it meets the wall of the school.
Tight security was in effect. Press was not allowed on the grounds of the high school. Pictures were taken by some parents. Standing on the side walk in front of the school.
White Plains Superintendent of Schools Dr. Joseph Ricca, (who approved the protest in negotiations with the student organized observance), attended and observed.
Speeches were given by student leaders were not heard well. There were some cheers. Some levity was observed, but this was the exception. There were chants of “No Guns! No Guns!” The group moved around to the juncture of the rounded library and the main building at 10:20 and filed with dignity into the school. There was no lingering and only a few students “hacked around” that this reporter observed.
Dr. Joseph Ricca told WPCNR, “The kids were pretty amazing. Really. The leaders said their piece in orderly fashion.
“They expressed they felt schools are no places for guns and that students needed to feel they were safe in school from violence. They read aloud the names of the 17 faculty and students killed at Stoneman Douglas High School and called for a moment of silence.
“At the end the students formed a large heart. A picture was taken of the heart and the picture will be sent to Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.
They also are sending bracelets in the Stoneman Douglas High School colors to the students of Parkland enscribed with the inscription,
“White Plains High School Cares”