Blazers participate in walkout in protest of county's COVID-19 learning plan

Jan. 21, 2022, 7:43 p.m. | By Maya Britto | 1 year, 10 months ago

Frustrated Blair students gathered in the parking lot today to demonstrate their disapproval of MCPS management with regards to the recent rise in COVID-19 cases

Blair students walked out of their sixth period classes today to express their disappointment regarding continued in-person learning despite increasing COVID-19 infection rates and shortages in transportation and teaching staff. Students in 17 other schools across the county did the same. 

The students demanded at least two weeks of remote learning, greater support for teachers to facilitate virtual instruction, and improved transparency and communication from the county's Board of Education. 

Blazers hold a protest sign as Blair security and administrators monitor the protest. Photo courtesy of Iris Montgomery, Silver Chips Print. Photo courtesy of Iris Montgomery.

The demonstration was modeled after a walkout that took place at Poolesville High School earlier this week. Student leaders, with the help of Blair administration and the SGA, organized the walkout over the span of five days. One of the organizers, sophomore Mars Moreno, explained their fears regarding continued in-person instruction. “I’m very scared for my family. I want to make sure that everyone is healthy, and I don’t want to be scared of attending school,” Moreno said. 

Blair principal Renay Johnson expressed appreciation for the student leaders that initiated the walkout and commented on the confusion MCPS has created recently with their management of the pandemic spread. “I’m very pleased with the student leaders that organized this. We have been given many directives [from MCPS], all mixed messages – it's very frustrating. I take a lot of time to analyze [each] message [in order to] present it to the staff and parents, and then [MCPS changes the message],” Johnson said. 

Although the walkout was cut short before seventh period due to extreme temperatures, the students that participated made it clear that their work was not over. “We have a plan to send an email to the Board of Education, saying that [the current policies are] not fair and that we need to be safe,” Moreno said. 

Last updated: Jan. 21, 2022, 7:45 p.m.

Tags: Montgomery County MCPS protests Montgomery County Public Schools Moco students protest COVID-19 covid-19 pandemic

Maya Britto. Hey, I'm Maya (she/her) and this year, I am co-Editor-in-chief of SCO! I'm passionate about social justice, music, dance, food, quality time with my friends, ice cream (but strictly vanilla), and good bad jokes. Stay cool, y'all. :) More »

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