(Photo by Mike Stocker/Sun Sentinel/TNS/Sipa USA)

Cuomo Wants Probe Of Any New York Schools That Blocked Exits During Student Walkout

March 15, 2018 - 4:20 pm

ALBANY, N.Y. (1010 WINS/AP) -- Gov. Andrew Cuomo has asked state education officials to investigate reports that some New York schools prevented students from taking part in Wednesday's nationwide student walkout to protest gun violence.
Cuomo sent a letter Thursday to Education Department Commissioner MaryEllen Elia, calling on her to look into any reports of schools blocking exits so students couldn't leave.
Cuomo called such actions "an egregious safety violation'' and unlawful. His letter mentioned reports of schools in New York state disciplining students and faculty for participating in the event.
Newsday reported students at some Long Island schools were suspended.

Cuomo joined students in New York City who walked out of their school for a "die-in" demonstration in Manhattan. He laid down on the pavement and joined students in chanting "Gun control now!"

Students in Sayreville, NJ were also threatened with suspensions and that appeared to be enough to deter all but one student from walking out of class.

Rosa Rodriguez walked out of Sayreville High School risking suspension while other students attended a gathering in the school auditorium, Schuck reported.

Rodriguez said she was disappointed in her fellow students.

"If you were gonna come outside in the first place, you should have still came outside. Just because you didn't want to have these consequences and stuff, just stay inside, you should have came outside and proven them wrong," she said.

The nationwide walkouts are the biggest demonstration yet of the student activism that has emerged following the massacre of 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on Feb. 14 in Parkland, Florida.