Inspired by 16 year old Swedish youth climate activist Greta Thunberg, young people around the globe participated in a Global Climate Strike on March 15th and Friends school students were among them, including students from Friends Select School, William Penn Charter, Cambridge Friends School and Media Providence Friends School.
Middle School students from Cambridge Friends School (CFS) in Massachusetts participated in the March 15 Global Climate Strike by marching to the State House where they joined crowds in pushing for legislation for action on climate change. “The youth organization was amazing and they were asking the rally to intensify the impact by lobbying representatives inside the State House,” reports Cambridge Friends. The March 15th climate strike does not mark the end of this kind of student activism for students at Cambridge Friends. The students will begin a mini lesson on lobbying in each science class and discuss different opportunities for other strikes, “this time student led and organized by our own students,” says MS math and science teacher Becca Mullin Connor “As we move into spring I will be helping to facilitate these groups and connections as I believe that this is integral to the students’ futures and to their learning experiences here at CFS.”
Students at Media-Providence Friends School chose to participate in the International Student Climate Strike on Friday March 15th in downtown Media, PA. Students created signage and walked from MPFS to the Delaware County Courthouse, both in downtown Media. MPFS 6th grade student Jeremy Peyton Jones first brought this international event to the attention of Head of School Earl Sissell, encouraging MPFS faculty, staff, and students to consider participating as it aligns with the Quaker value of Stewardship for our community and the larger world, as well as the school’s mission of creating and supporting young agents of change. “It may be on a small scale, but we need to fight for our own future,” writes Jones. Students learned and discussed the issue of climate change in their science classes as well as the political implications of the issue during vibrant and inclusive classroom discussions. They then decided for themselves whether to participate in the student strike – an important part of the process to becoming an informed citizen and active member of the community. Finally, students, along with faculty and parents, worked together to create signage with phrases meaningful to each individual like, “Save the Environment! If You Don’t Act Like Adults, We Will” and “If You Won’t Act, We’ll Have To” and “Give A Hoot, Don’t Pollute!”
In Philadelphia, Middle school students from Friends Select School
and students from William Penn Charter School
turned out for the global strike by gathering with other student activists at LOVE Park near Philadelphia’s City Hall.