COBB COUNTY, Ga. - Demanding gun reform and safer schools, students across the country are planning walkouts March 14. Some Atlanta area school districts support the students' right to demonstrate, but others don't want the students to take part in the national walkout.
Cobb County students were told if they walk out, there may be consequences. Some of the students said they plan to do it despite that warning.
Meghan Toomey and Lilly Renaud are helping to organize the walkout at Lassiter High School. They said their hearts go out to the students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida. The 17-minute planned demonstration is symbolic of the 17 lives lost in the mass shooting.
"We want this to be a positive walk out, a positive change, a step in the right direction. We're going to set aside 10 seconds for each victim of the shooting and read their names and ages just to honor them," said Megan Toomey.
They're encouraging others to do 17 acts of kindness.
They're also demonstrating for safer schools.
"We want to create dialogue in Congress about school safety so we don't have to worry about getting shot up in schools," said Lilly Renaud.
Citing safety concerns, Cobb County School officials released a statement Wednesday saying the district "does not support or endorse walkouts/protests that can cause interruption to normal school operations" the statement goes on to read "students could be subject to consequences."
District leaders said they're willing to work with students to find a way for them to show their empathy for the Florida victims without disrupting school operations.
Toomey and Renaud said they're still moving forward with their plans.
"We sent emails to the superintendent's office saying we will not be deterred, we're following through with this, we think this is the right thing to do," said Toomey.
Some of the students will also be selling t-shirts with the proceeds going directly to the families of the victims in Florida.