Seattle students walk out to protest education cuts

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by LINDA BRILL / KING 5 News

NWCN.com

Posted on December 14, 2011 at 7:55 AM

Updated Sunday, Nov 24 at 3:59 AM

SEATTLE – Hundreds of Seattle high-schoolers walked out of class today to protest education budget cuts.  Seattle teenagers joined students at the University of Washington to send a message to Olympia.

The student protest was about 300 to 400 kids strong and for most of them it wasn't just a chance to cut school, it was a chance to protest serious budget problems.

It was the "all city" student walk out against budget cuts.  High-schoolers from Seattle High Schools' Garfield, Ballard, Roosevelt and Nathan Hale walked out of school with a simple message: Fund us.

"You cut school...we cut class," said one student.

The students walked to the University of Washington.  They're angry about the staggering proposed education cuts that will affect them now and quite possibly in the future at the likes of a four-year university.

They're upset about the governor's proposed K-12 cuts of $250 million and the higher education cuts of $160 million. 

"I've been booted out of classes cause class sizes are at their max," said another student.

"The amount of loans they'll have to get to get an education is ridiculous," said a protester.

Today's student walkout is a timely civics lesson organized on Facebook.  But is the state legislature listening to these kids?

"I think there is a deep sense of anxiety in our state and in our country about what's happening in a sense of inequality, in a sense of injustice and the fact that education is being cut left and right goes to the core of people's values and we have to deal with this," said Rep. Reuven Carlyle.

The Seattle School District says they encourage students to stay in class. Students who have a note from a parent or guardian can be excused, and the school district noted to KING 5 that principals or their designees can make exceptions to excuse otherwise unapproved absences.

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