Bay Area students make voices heard during walkouts

OAKLAND, Calif. (KGO) -- Students in the Bay Area and across the nation walked out of class today in another protest against gun violence in school.

But, this time it coincides with a somber anniversary. On this day 19 years ago, an attack by students at Columbine High that left 13 people dead. There were actually two protests against gun violence today at Oakland's Skyline High School.

This morning, 2 to 300 students gathered on the football field for a rally that had the blessing of school administrators.

RELATED: Bay Area students hold moment of silence on Columbine anniversary

But, this afternoon, about 100 students marched off campus in a protest that did not have the district's okay. Some carried signs, most chanted, " hey hey, ho ho, NRA has got to go."

Student Avelina Rivezzo-Weber explained why they were willing to defy authority, "gun violence is an issue that affects the Skyline Community immensely. We lose many community members to gun violence year after year."

Senior Elias Tadesse added, "guns around here is not that uncommon, but that's why we need more control over it."

It wasn't just Oakland. Students chanting: "the people united will never be divided," walked off campus at San Jose's Notre Dame High School and took their concerns all the way to city hall.

RELATED: A guide to student walkouts

Student Astrid Dominguez said, "We're walking today to amplify the voices of those affected...we're here to stand up and see the change we want to see in the world. Because if we're not going to take a stand who else is?"

Students also protested gun violence outside Tamalpais High in Mill Valley.

At Sonoma Valley High in the north bay they took things a step farther, registering students to vote, so they could take their protest to the ballot box.
All these protests were designed to coincide with the 19th anniversary of the attack by two students on classmates and teachers at Colorado's Columbine high-- killing 13 before they turned the guns on themselves.

Columbine and other attacks have emboldened these kids to stand-up for themselves, even if that means walking out. Skyline High's Avelina Rivezzo-Weber concluded, "this is happening nation-wide. Why shouldn't we participate?"

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