AUBURN HILLS (WWJ) – About 250 Oakland County students staged a sit in Friday morning — unhappy with the state of things at their high school.
Videos of the peaceful demonstration shared on social media show students sitting cross-legged alongside rows of lockers in the school’s hallway.
The protest began before the start of classes and lasted about three hours.
A typed letter to administrators said the students at Avondale High School in Auburn Hills planned to sit in silence to protest what they say is an atmospheric decline, adding that many students don’t enjoy going to the school anymore.
“Administration has instilled so much fear into their students about taking their privileges to walk or graduate away that they let themselves get hurt and risk their own safety to protect that privilege,” the letter states. “We are here today because were have began to feel less as students and more as a number or asset. Budget has become more important than or education or experience of high school.”
A parent talking to WWJ’s Charlie Langton said the teens feel like their voices are not being heard and that they wouldn’t move until they were able to to meet with administrators to discuss ways to improve the school environment.
Avondale School District Communications Director Annette McCovoy says specifics of what the students want were not immediately clear, but the adults were listening.
“Students are engaged in discussion with high school administrators as well as Avondale School District administrators, including our superintendent,” she said.
School officials said Superintendent James Schwarz, Asst. Superintendent of Curriculum Carmen Kennedy and Asst. Superintendent of Student Services Martin Alwardt spoke briefly with the students who “expressed their thoughts about programming and building operations.”
McCovoy said, as an Avondale grad herself, she’s proud of the way the kids are handling their concerns.
The students were back to class before 10:30 a.m.