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Morton Parents Call for Amnesty

Parents of Morton West students who face expulsion to hold a press conference.
11-06-07-ma.doc (118 k)
Media Alert
For Immediate Release
Attention: News Assignment

Press Conference
9:30 AM, Tuesday, November 6
In front of Morton West High School
2400 South Home Ave., Berwyn, Illinois

Parents Urge High School to Reverse Expulsions for Students Who Held Iraq War Protest on All Saints Day

Morton West administrators have moved to expel dozens of students who took part in a peaceful, non-violent All Saints Day sit-in to voice opposition to Iraq War.

Berwyn – Parents of Morton West High School students will gather for a press conference at 9:30AM Tuesday, November 6 in front of the school, to urge school administrators to reverse their decision to expel dozens of children who marked All Saints Day last week by staging a peaceful, non-violent sit-in at the school cafeteria to voice opposition to the Iraq War.

The November 1 school cafeteria event served in part as a counterpoint in the school setting to military recruiters on campus, who routinely visit the high school multiple times each week seeking to enlist young people into military service. More than two hundred students participated in the All Saints Day anti-war protest through the course of the day.

Students complied with a school administrator's request to move the action outside the cafeteria after initially being assured that the only disciplinary action they would face was citation for cutting classes. But administrators subsequently threatened expulsion, including for students who joined the sit-in later in the day. Administrators have since issued formal notices to dozens of student that they will be expelled from the school, suspended many more, and threatened to bring criminal charges against students age 17 and older who participated in the anti-war action.

School administrators also put the school on lockdown briefly during the All Saints Day protest. That action stands in stark contrast to administrators’ response to a report of a student with a gun on campus last month. In that incident, administrators chose not to lock down the school.

At the press conference, parents will read a letter to the school superintendent demanding complete amnesty for the students, and then parents and students will take questions from the press before delivering the letter to the School District 201 office.

The District has said they will issue final decisions on appeals of the suspensions, on Tuesday, however, they say the orders of expulsion still stand. The District 201 School Board is scheduled to meet at 7PM at Morton East High School on Wednesday evening.




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