WATCH: Arlington high schoolers protest Trump immigration actions
Students from at least three Arlington high school staged protests around noon Friday
Students protesting President Donald Trump’s recent immigration actions staged walkouts at three Arlington high schools Friday.
Sam Houston, Lamar, and Arlington High School all saw on-campus rallies around lunch time at which students voiced opinions on the contentious topic of immigration.
Some students held signs while others chanted. The protest at Lamar, which lasted from noon to 1 p.m., featured lots of explicit language.
As the protest at Lamar grew in energy, some students were witnessed riding on top of cars in the parking lot and shouting expletives.
“We don’t want to be deported,” one ninth-grade student said. “F--- Donald Trump like everyone is saying.”
Principal Andrew Hagman, along with several security and school resource officers, monitored the situation from the parking lot. He did not respond to a follow-up call for comment.
Most Lamar students returned to class at 1 p.m. while a handful reportedly “walked off” campus.
District spokesperson Leslie Johnston said similar protests occurred at Sam Houston and Arlington High School, but not at any other high schools.
“If there was any kind of incident which might have violated our student code of conduct, then there will discipline,” Johnston said.
Students who “walked off” or didn’t come to school Friday or Thursday will receive an unexcused absence, Johnston said. The District would have to evaluate future walk offs for discipline, she said.
A reported “day without immigrants” occurred Thursday, which affected school attendance. According to Johnston, attendance Thursday was around 88 percent compared to 94 percent on Wednesday. Data for Friday wasn’t available.
Sam Houston Principal Fernando Benavides acknowledged the protests and the dip in attendance in a letter to students and parents Friday morning.
“Our goals to educate you....so you can be empowered and advocate for yourself, your family, and our community,” Benavides wrote. “Protests, boycotts, and walkouts in a school work against these goals and create disruptions to the learning environment and your safety.”
A lockdown was reported at Arlington High School around noon, but was a “technical error” that had nothing to do with the protests, Johnston said.
“Security is looking into it,” she said when asked about the technical error.