In response to the Parkland, Florida tragedy, groups around the country are planning national school walkouts on March 14th.  At 10 a.m. that day in every time zone, students and school personnel are encouraged to walk out of school for 17 minutes to honor each person killed at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and bring light to the focus on school safety nationwide. We have received questions from parents, staff and students about how that day may look in the South Sioux City Community Schools. First and foremost, we have invested a large amount of planning, practice, technology and human resources to provide the safest possible settings for our students and faculty during the school day. We feel that it would be safest and most productive to allow our students to participate in the event that day within the security of our buildings district wide. As a parent of students in our district and your Superintendent, I want to share with other concerned parents, our teachers and students that an opportunity to observe, help plan and participate in an event within the safety of our buildings is being provided.

South Sioux City Community Schools supports freedom of expression and each school’s principal is open to  working with student councils, the RESPECT committee, possibly parents and other students who wish to collaborate  to plan an honorable event in a safe, supervised setting that day. We will allow students and their principals to structure those 17 minutes on the 14th at 10 a.m. The intent is to allow our students and staff to have a voice and platform to express themselves with others should they wish to do so.  We also want create an atmosphere that is voluntary, safe and productive for all students and faculty within our buildings.  We have bright, engaged students and promote civic awareness in our curriculum. We encourage our students’ to use the proper avenues available in a democratic society to communicate their views. Events such as this day, writing letters to the legislature or using their voice in an organized manner are all examples of how our students and citizens can make an impact.

With Respect,

Todd Strom, Superintendent

South Sioux City Community Schools