Friday, April 3, 2009

Students protest crap food

By: Michelle Willard

McFadden School of Excellence students marched and held a sit-in on the steps of the Bradley Academy Museum in protest of junk food today. The protest was part of a lesson on the Civil Rights movement.

Among the strains of “We Shall Overcome” and “This Train is Bound for Glory,” 55 McFadden fifth-grade students marched down Academy Street protesting junk food as part of a class project.

The students marched to Bradley Academy Museum for a lesson in the Civil Rights movement and the First Amendment right to peaceful protest, teacher Christy Moore said.

“We like to give them authentic ways to learn,” teacher Christa Campbell explained, adding the protest will make the lesson more real for the students and reinforce the history lesson.

After a two-week lesson on civil rights, the students picked their own issue, eating healthy and exercise, and marched in protest.

Parent Belinda Pate said she thought it was a good way to get the history lesson across, plus healthy eating a exercise are “what us parents are always trying to protest with our kids.”

The teachers also had the students wear different colored T-shirts – either red, green or blue – and treated the groups differently depending on what color they wore.

For example on the way to the protest, red-shirted students had to sit in the back of the bus, blue-shirts sat in the middle and weren’t allowed to talk, and green-shirts could sit in the front of the bus and talk all they wanted, student Asha Phillips explained.

The teachers also made different groups use different bathrooms at school.

Phillips, wearing a green shirt, said at first she felt bad for being treated differently.

“But then I decided to take it seriously. … It will be an example I will really remember,” she said.

Fellow student Jackson Edmondson said the lesson brought Black History Month to life.

“We learned what it felt like to be treated differently,” he said.

Moore said the students complained about the unfair treatment at first.

“But we’ve talked about it so much, they realized they have it good,” she said.

Hmmmm, have we found something corpse-munchers can't stop?

1969 Tinker v. Des Moines: In our system, state-operated schools may not be enclaves of totalitarianism. School officials do not possess absolute authority over their students. Students in school as well as out of school are “persons” under our Constitution. They are possessed of fundamental rights which the State must respect, just as they themselves must respect their obligations to the State. In our system, students may not be regarded as closed-circuit recipients of only that which the State chooses to communicate. They may not be confined to the expression of those sentiments that are officially approved.

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1 comment:

  1. That was a good exercise in teaching the first amendment. But protesting against 'junk food' and racism is acceptable. An anti-war or vegan dialog in schools is still out of bounds to the state and would get put a teacher's career in jeopardy, as you so well know. Hopefully some of these kids will remember their lesson and take it step further later on in life.