New York public schools supporting students and the climate


New York climate protest 2019

Last Friday, students across New York skipped school to participate in a climate protest. This protest was just one of many across the United States, and even the world.

All of the protests were orchestrated by youth who are concerned about the lack of action being taken against the ever-present climate issue. Over 1.1 Million students and concerned citizens participated in New York alone. Just like the excused absence student protests in past years, the New York public schools did not penalize the students for their absence which in turn inspired more students to attend.

At first, many of the students and teachers in New York were planning on skipping school to attend the protest no matter what the consequences were. Once the state realized how many people were going to be absent, they altered the school schedule to give them a day off. This gave students the opportunity to attend the protest without consequences, and the teachers could march alongside their students without worrying about losing their jobs or worrying about the students who would’ve showed up to school that day.

Some teachers didn’t think the protest, and the day off school, were necessary or impactful. Instead, they want better education of how to help the climate. Their concerns were heard and the State came up with a curriculum tailored to each grade on the climate problems we face and how to help. While educating the students is necessary and will help in the future, the world-wide protest is also necessary for action to be taken now instead of waiting for this generation of students to grow up. If we take that route, it might be too late for or planet. 

The New York public school system did the right thing by helping students participate in a protest that affects the well being of their future and by helping educate students on our climate problems. Hopefully the millions of people who came together to take action this past week made a difference, if not for the future generations, then for the well-being of the world.