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Social Studies Students Visit ‘Occupy Detroit’

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River Rouge High School teacher Eric Pate with students Chase Gonzalez and Anthony Sloan (WWJ Photo/Pat Sweeting)

River Rouge High School teacher Eric Pate with students Chase Gonzalez and Anthony Sloan (WWJ Photo/Pat Sweeting)

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DETROIT (WWJ) – As the Occupy-Detroit encampment was being disassembled, a River Rouge High School Social Studies class got a close-up look at what social activism is all about.

Teacher Eric Pate told WWJ Newsradio 950’s Pat Sweeting he brought his 37 students to Grand Circus Park to talk to the protesters face-to-face because social studies should extend beyond the classroom.

“I think, too often we get caught-up in what’s going on in room whatever … so and so, room 306, room 305. This is where social studies happens, out here in the community,” Pate said.

Eighteen-year-old student Chase Gonzalez said before he arrived at the park encampment he didn’t believe the protest was “all that deep.” But, after talking to Occupy Detroit protesters, the high schooler now thinks bankers and politicians should visit the camps, too.

occupy detroit teardown Social Studies Students Visit Occupy Detroit

(WWJ Photo/Pat Sweeting)

“I really do, because there’s a lot of people that really need help, that’s not getting’ the assistance for it. And, they starting’ to cut back on things like that and it’s really making our society a lot worse,” he said.

Occupy Detroit protesters must be out of the park by 10 p.m. today, but say they aren’t giving up their fight for the 99-percent. They’ll disperse to locations around the city and will continue holding meetings in the park and elsewhere.

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