Updated Oct. 6 at 3:50 p.m.
Lively community members honked their vehicles' horns enthusiastically Thursday afternoon as about 200 Lively District Secondary School students circled the community, holding signs and cheering.
The high school students walked out of their classes 15 minutes into their third period to protest the Rainbow District School Board's plans to close their school as early as next fall.
Several police officers in marked and unmarked vehicles followed the procession, while a few teachers stood outside the school on the warm October afternoon, watching the action.
“I was very surprised at how many kids were actually walking out,” said Grade 11 Lively student Jayden Kidd, one of the walkout's organizers.
“I think they're all a little scared, but it's good to show your pride and stuff. I think it's just a good way to get ourselves out there.
“This is a third-period class. We walked out 15 minutes into the class to make our point. We told everyone last night, but the teachers found out today, and the principals.
“I think it shows that we have lots of pride for our school. We want to stay here, and there's a point in keeping the school.”
Tiia Nurmikivi, also in Grade 11, becomes emotional when speaking about her school's potential closure.
“We're showing our support for our school, which we need to do, because I feel like our voice may not be heard by the board,” she said.
“We love our school, We have so many great, amazing teachers that will lose their job. It's hard.”
In an interview with Sudbury.com, Rainbow board director of education Norm Blaseg encouraged the students to become as informed about the issue as possible, and participate in a “constructive dialogue” with the board.
“Sometimes the student voice is the voice of reason,” Blaseg said. “We need to make sure they're are integral part of this conversation.”
Some 200 students at Lively District Secondary School marched out of their third period classes today hoping to show the Rainbow District School Board just how much their community high school means to them.
As officers from the Greater Sudbury Police Service looked on, the students walked out, many holding signs aimed at rallying community support to their cause.
Sudbury.com has a reporter at the school at this hour. There will be more on this story this afternoon.