County-by-county: Schools address National Walkout Day

Parents reported intimidation and lock outs by teachers.

ATLANTA — Thousands of students walked out of schools for 17 minutes in metro Atlanta Wednesday.

The movement Wednesday was to honor the 17 victims in the Parkland shooting.

Here is a look at how schools dealt with the protests:

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ATLANTA PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Schools allowed students to participate in the walkout.

CHEROKEE COUNTY: Schools allowed supervised activities for students wanting to participate. "Students who participate in the events will not face academic penalty or disciplinary action as long as they promptly return to class at the event's conclusion."

CLAYTON COUNTY: Schools allowed students to participate. County leaders are "fully supporting efforts of staff/students to participate in peaceful demonstrations associated with this event."

COBB COUNTY: Schools did not allow students to walk out. The county said it "will work with students to identify the best methods to accomplish this demonstration of empathy without interruption of normal school operation, which is a policy violation and potentially jeopardizes student and staff safety."

Attorneys were on-hand for parents and student who said they were kept from participating in demonstrations in Cobb County. The coalition of attorneys is keeping a hotline open for parents who have questions about their rights: 1-833-2STUDENT.

DOUGLAS COUNTY: Schools allowed students to participate. "If our students walk out for a reasonable amount of time and return in an orderly fashion, there will be no consequences."


FAYETTE COUNTY: Schools allowed students to gather on school grounds but "also ask students not to move off of campus for their own safety and security." The school "supports their rights to peaceful assembly and appropriate free expression, but that the school/system priority is about teaching and learning. Should negative/disruptive behavior occur, such as walk-outs during the school day, the Fayette County Student Code of Conduct remains in place and will be enforced accordingly."

FULTON COUNTY: Schools allowed students to "express themselves peacefully in safe events that will not disrupt instructional time." Officials said "middle and high schools will adapt schedules to allow students to express their support using established protocols and guidance from school and district leadership. All activities are optional."

GWINNETT COUNTY: Schools did not allow students to walk out. The county said the decision has no connection to the cause, but "based solely on what is best for students in terms of retaining an
orderly and safe school environment." The county said any students who walked out of class will be issued an unexcused absence.

HENRY COUNTY: School officials did not stop student participation but will not promote the events at the schools.

PAULDING COUNTY: Schools did not allow students to walk out. The county said, "while the school district supports the rights of students to demonstrate peacefully and respectfully, this event encourages a violation of campus security protocols that our schools cannot facilitate."

MARIETTA CITY SCHOOLS: Officials allowed students to have a ceremony.