Tens of thousands join climate crisis protests across world

Cheryl Sanders
September 20, 2019

Thousands of students and workers across Australia took to the streets to demand stronger action on climate change.

South Broward High School senior Elijah Ruby had been handing out flyers advertising a climate change protest when a school administrator told him he would be suspended from campus for a day and barred from attending prom and other special class events.

"Millions of us will walk out of our workplaces and homes to join young climate strikers on the streets and demand an end to the age of fossil fuels", said the Angeles Chapter of the Sierra Club, who is helping to organize the event.

The movement is partly inspired by Swedish teenager Greta Thunberg, who has staged weekly demonstrations over the past year under the hashtag #FridaysForFuture, calling on world leaders to step up efforts against climate change. "We wanted to stand for it before we went to school for the day", one of the children said.

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said: "It is unbelievable that we should need global strike action for the future of our planet to be taken seriously". "Any student who is missing from class will be marked as an unexcused cut for the missing time".

'While the teacher has determined that the conversation at today's global climate strike is educational and relevant to the learning for this project, RMIT will of course be looking at the decision to ensure that assessment integrity is maintained'.

Our kids get it: While schools and parents wring their hands and debate over issuing "excused absences" for missed classes, they have ignored the fact that the surge of carbon emissions previous year increasingly renders a bleak future.

Ruby's parents defended their son's climate activism and were upset that the school did not do more to help students participate in the climate strike.

The district won't be excusing any absences Friday. The Santa Monica Mirror has reached out to LAUSD Local District West, which serves many Westside families, seeking more information but they could not immediately be reached for comment.

Protesters with placards participate in The Global Strike 4 Climate rally in Sydney.

Private schools can take a nimbler approach.

"While Ashland School District supports students' Constitutional rights to peaceful assembly and free expression, we can not support an activity that represents a loss in instructional time", school officials said.

An academically gifted schoolgirl from Perth will deliberately miss a crucial maths exam so that she can attend climate change protests on Friday. She has been doing the same every Friday since (if she's not speaking at the United Nations, or busy schooling the US Congress).

Dozens of companies, including Patagonia, Ben and Jerry's and the Guardian, will support striking staff, with major unions also backing the walkouts.

More than 5,000 events are planned worldwide, culminating in a massive rally in NY, where 1.1 million students in around 1,800 public schools have been permitted to skip school.

"Soon the sun will rise on Friday the 20th of September 2019". You can also sign up for a one-time annual payment. There are a variety of opportunities to teach and model methods for effective civic engagement, while under our care and supervision at our school sites. "The hope is that the USA will join in at the point where public opinion is able to influence the national voice more than it does today".

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