MDI High School was scheduled to hold a lockdown drill today, Thursday, February 15th, but school officials decided this morning at 6:30 to postpone it, given the horrible tragedy of the real school shooting in Florida, yesterday, February 14th.

This morning, while Principal Matt Haney was meeting with teachers, 50 - 100 students lined the hallways in protest of the tragedy in Florida.

Photo Bo Greene

Students were then brought from advisories to meet in Bernard Parady Gymnasium so that Principal Matt Haney could talk to them. Here's what he said

Good morning.  By now I’m sure that you are aware of the horrible event of school violence that occured yesterday in Parkland, Florida.  Out of respect for the victims and in acknowledgement of heightened emotions we have postponed today’s lockdown drill.  We will reschedule at a more appropriate time after February vacation.
The coming days and weeks will undoubtedly be filled with debate about the second amendment, mental health, and school security.  During this time I implore us to remember that while we may disagree on the details, the vast majority of people in this world care deeply for one another and wish to see an end to such violent tragedies.  Our own community is one that celebrates peace, kindness, and love.  Love for our fellow humans, our planet, and all that is good in the world.  I believe that this love is at the root of the solution to the problems our society faces today.

 

This will be a difficult day in schools across America, including our own.  While we will hold classes on a regular schedule, please know that if you need, our guidance staff is here and ready to help you, by listening, talking, or just giving you a safe place to reflect.  Remember, we are in this together.  

 

Before we move on with our day, I invite you all to stand and join me in a moment of silence to honor those impacted by the horrible events that occurred yesterday.
Students sat on the floor, continuing their silent demonstration
Photo Bo Greene

According to the student organizers, Dawson Burnett reached out to Mackenzie Miller and a few others to see if there was any interest in holding a protest. After the shooting in Florida on Wednesday afternoon they were feeling inspired to take action. With the scheduled lockdown, they thought it would be a good idea to hold a silent protest showing their sadness and outrage with the government on their lack of care towards the safety of American students. Signs read "Students safety before gun owners rights" and "Put Senate on lockdown until students are safe" among other things. They felt like unless students stand up and voice their concerns, nothing will change. They believe that the safety of American children should be the number one priority of the American government and if that means stricter gun control then so be it. They started the protest at 7:30 AM in the hallway with 30 students and throughout the protest ended up with another 60 or so students as well as some teachers. They do not want to become part of a statistic. There have been 18 school shootings so far this year, something needs to be done.

This afternoon at 2:30 in a hastily organized protest by Indivisible MDI, 44 students plus parents, grandparents and community members demonstrated that enough is enough at the entrance to MDI High School