Cranston students protest gun violence in memory of Parkland victims
About 2,000 Cranston High School East students bundled up and walked out of school Wednesday in memory of those killed in school shootings and to demand change.
"Everybody here is feeling the same fear. We feel that school sometimes isn't safe and that the way politicians are responding to it isn't going to help us feel any safer at school," said Darien Dinaro, a senior.
The fear is real for these students, and every time another tragedy hits one of our nation's schools, that fear grows.
The National School Walkout came one month after a gunman shot and killed 17 people at a high school in Parkland, Florida.
"I think there is fear because I had a couple of peers that wanted to walk out, but they were unsure if there was going to be a police presence here to keep us safe," said Shevanna Yee, a senior.
Police officers monitored the situation, and school officials too -- all in support of the students' right to do it.
"We were expecting a lot of people and this really impressed us and we hope this is a message to the politicians in the area that we're not old enough to vote yet, but we're future constituents and our opinions matter," said Nathaniel Hardy, a senior.
Were their voices heard?
"I think it's important for us to have a voice and be a representation for the entire student body and younger generations, too," Yee said.
"We are part of a national movement, and if we can show our support for the students in Florida, but also our passion and drive to create meaningful change in terms of gun control, and I think that's what we're here for," said Emma Boucher, a junior.
Students in several other schools around the region participated in similar walkouts.