Yellow Springs High School students Maggie Krabec,
left, Jessica Northridge and Lilith Claire were among the many YSHS
and McKinney School students who walked out of school Wednesday,
March 5, in an antiwar protest.
held at YSHS, McKinney and Antioch College
Springs students protest war
A significant number of students from Yellow Springs High School, the
McKinney School and Antioch College marched through the cold last week
to oppose U.S. actions toward war in Iraq.
An estimated 75 to 100 middle school and high school students walked out
of school at noon on Wednesday, March 5, to participate in a nationwide
student strike known as Books Not Bombs. Students straggled
out the schools front door carrying antiwar signs along East Enon
Road to the corner of Dayton Street, where they chanted for peace to passersby.
The protest cemented our beliefs about the war, that its not
the correct answer to what were facing in the Middle East,
high school student Lilith Claire said.
Even McKinney School language arts teacher Aurelia Blake joined student
ranks to march on Wednesday, contributing signs from a peace rally in
School officials gave permission to students who had parental consent
to leave school property and continue the protest march downtown, Principal
John Gudgel said. A splinter group of 3040 students, some with permission
and some without, continued down Dayton Street to Limestone Street, across
Mills Lawn and into town chanting spontaneous call-and-answer rounds such
as, Who are we? YSHS. What do we stand for? No war!
YSHS seniors Jennifer Starbuck and Aurianna Tuttle organized the protest
by word of mouth that morning after retrieving information on the Web
about the nationwide effort, Starbuck said. The school made an announcement
around 10 a.m. giving all students permission to participate during lunch,
adding that leaving school property would require parental consent.
I took a group of people who were just doing the lunchtime protest
and brought them back to prove I didnt rally to get out of school,
However, some of the students who chose to continue into town left without
I had no problem with them organizing a lunchtime demonstration
on campus, Gudgel said. I respect the kids for expressing
But from a liability standpoint, the school is responsible for its students
during the school day, and parents need to know where they are, he said.
School rules for leaving campus without permission were applied,
Meanwhile, at 12:30 that same day on the Antioch College campus, 30 to
40 Antioch students gathered in front of Main Building for a moment of
silence in solidarity with the March 5 antiwar efforts, said senior Robert
Neifert, who organized the action on campus.
We stood in solidarity with everybody whos struggling to stop
violence and everybody whos going to be affected by it, Neiffert
said. We had a moment of silence to think about our soldiers and
the Iraqi people.
Later that day, some of the same students led an hour-long protest march
through classrooms and administrative offices, picking up one to two people
from every room who joined the group. Even a few faculty members walked
out of meetings and fell in step with the student demonstrators, Neiffert
Its been a collaborative process with a lot of students and
a lot of faculty members on how to go about doing the most effective stuff
on campus, he said.
The college will host several speakers and a series of workshops and discussion
groups Friday, March 14, to encourage debate and information sharing on
the current political situation. Activities are open to people of all
points of view, and high school students as well as students from other
colleges have been invited to join the talks.
Starbuck hopes she and other high school students can also participate
in discussions at Antioch as an extension of the action that took place
For people who didnt get a chance to go to Washington, its
a way to bring the protest home, which is just as important, she