Students walked out of school and marched the streets of Fresno Friday in honor of National School Walkout Day.
Officials at Charlotte Catholic High said students leaders had chosen to pray rather than walk out of class that day, but acknowledged that the school's principal had told students they could be disciplined for leaving class.
"There was no reason why I should be that scared at my school, where I'm supposed to be able to feel safe", she said.
Betsy Rosen, a Myers Park parent who is not related to the suspended students, said she was outraged by the school's action.
This movement had been in the works since the walkout in March that supported the victims in Parkland High School shooting in Florida.
There have been at least two incidents of students being caught bringing a gun to a Tuscaloosa City school this year.
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The protest on Friday was billed as the National School Walkout and was organized in part by 16-year-old Arielle Geismar, a junior at Beacon High School in New York City.
Starting Friday morning, fifth graders on up, accompanied by chaperones, filed out of the school in Brooklyn Heights en route to the protest, even as other students arrived at the protest without permission slips, under threat of demerit, and fearful of academic repercussions.
The students with the Phoenix March for Our Lives group rallied on the anniversary of the 1999 school shooting at Columbine High School in Colorado.
Student organizer Jordan Harb criticized the armed protesters as students ate pizza on the Senate lawn and prepared for orchestrated "die-ins" at the Capitol.
"We wanted this to be a moment where we could actually create real change and I wanted to educate people on current gun laws and what they can do", said Nelson.
"People don't need to have these guns". "We are trying to give them an alternate viewpoint". Though he believes school shootings are a problem, he said the gun control measures his peers are rallying for are "authoritative" and "too big of a measure". "We just have to get out there and make our voices heard". Students took the stage to issue an ultimatum to their lawmakers.
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Harb said the students want Republican Gov. Doug Ducey to enact gun violence legislation and include them in negotiations on school safety proposals.
Rally organizers called for changes including bans on assault weapons and high-capacity magazines.
Plans for a 10 a.m. walkout circulated, but the school main entrance was quiet when the hour arrived Friday.
"I feel like things have gotten worse these last few years", said Emma Corcoran, a 15-year-old from Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School in Maryland, at a rally in Washington.
"A lot of times our voice is not heard, and so I think just getting our bodies here to say we are here, we are part of this conversation, you can not shut us out [is important]", said Alejandro Eduarte, a junior at Edison Senior High School in Minneapolis.
"We didn't expect to come into the building talking to Superintendent".
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Modi spoke on the incidents in Kathua and Unnao after his political rivals questioned his "silence" on the issue. A four-month police investigation found that she was kidnapped, starved, drugged, and raped repeatedly.
"Make a stand for what we believe in, and walking out is a good way to do that because we can quite physically put our bodies in front of the world for them to see and so we protest actively", Kellerher said. What we are doing is being heard.