ASD Response to National Days of Advocacy

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Dear ASD Families, 

In response to the recent tragic events of Parkland, FL., national days of advocacy have been planned for March 14th and April 20th.   These dates include a 17-minute walk out of schools across the nation.   The District understands the immense emotional aspects that are connected to these events and respects the intent. Per consultation with ASD student leaders and faculty, we have arrived at an approach that will continue to give voice to student advocacy while at the same time ensuring the safety of all concerned. 

1. Superintendent Thomas Parker met with 60 student leaders from each high school in the district to hear their concerns and identify how to support their advocacy but prioritize student and staff safety.
2. To ensure the safety and security of our students at all times, student leaders within each high school will plan activities that allow their voice to be heard, but also keep them safe inside the buildings. 
3. The student leadership teams at our high schools have been charged with designing how they want awareness to be raised in their school while also honoring the lives of those lost due to violence.  
4. The school administrative teams have been charged with supporting students in planning positive activities as a part of a school wide day of advocacy.
5. Students will be marked tardy or absent, per the district attendance policy if they choose to leave the school building without approval.
6. We are encouraging our staff to remain engaged and support students during the advocacy periods in the school building.  Allentown School District employees engaging in a “walk-out” must utilize personal days to do so.

The Allentown School District values and supports student voice and advocacy on local and national levels. 
 
Thank you, 
Thomas E. Parker
Superintendent, Allentown School District