The Spark

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.” — Karl Marx

Third Detroit Student Walk Out

Apr 30, 2012

Two Western High School students have started a “Freedom School” across the street from their high school. Why? As many as 180 Detroit High School students were slapped with suspensions and some threatened with court fines for demanding an education and walking out of classes on April 25th.

Suspended students are invited to attend the Freedom School and two university professors have volunteered to teach.

This sudden escalation of punishments seems to indicate that school officials are a bit panicked by the third student walk out – and 5th demonstration – at a Detroit public school in the last two months.

Said one Western freshman of administrators: “You are basically keeping us out of school for wanting to better our school.... I was worried the day of the walk out. I’m not now. I’m angry.”

The most recent walk out involved unified actions by students from two schools: Western and Southwestern High Schools. Students are worried about the planned merger of their two schools, pointing out that Western is overcrowded already.

Recently about 50 high school students at the Frederick Douglass Academy protested a lack of teachers, and were given one day suspensions. Before that, hundreds of students at Denby High staged a demonstration against their school being thrown into a state wide failing district. And hundreds of students, teachers and parents protested outside Mumford High School. Two demonstrations have been held to protest the closing of the Detroit School for the Deaf.

Any chance of Detroit Public School students receiving an education will come from more students, parents and teachers getting on board with the fight these students have started.