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RHS students protest against sexual assault victims being silenced

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  A group of dozens of Revere High School students walked out of class on Friday afternoon, many walking to City Hall, in a planned protest against sexual assault victims and survivors being silenced by school officials.

  “This afternoon, a little under 10 percent of our students walked out before their last class started and some marched to City Hall to demonstrate support for victims of sexual assault,” Superintendent of Schools Dr. Dianne Kelly stated in a letter sent home to the Revere High school community on Friday. “The movement grew out of a private, ongoing issue between two students. While it would be inappropriate to provide specifics about the issue, I can assure you RHS administration has taken appropriate steps to ensure the safety of all students and has engaged with the appropriate legal authorities.”

  The walkout and protest was organized under the direction of a social media group identifying itself as RAGEAGAINSTRHS. According to one of its posts, the walkout did not revolve around one person, but was to ensure that all students have the right to speak up about sexual assault and abuse.

  “We’re just getting started,” one post from the day before the walkout states. “We’re using the opportunity of the walk out and protest to get more stories from those who wish to tell them … Although RHS faculty may have silenced you, there are others who will listen.”

  A community forum with RHS Principal Dr. John Perella is scheduled for Monday, Dec. 20 at 6 p.m. via Zoom, according to the letter from Kelly.

  “We want to work collaboratively to better understand the experience your child is describing at RHS so we can meet their needs,” Kelly stated. “There is an increased number of guidance counselors and social workers who are available this year for students.”

  Kelly thanked the RHS teachers and administrators who worked to help students to raise their voices, articulate their beliefs, and create a forum to be heard. “I also want to thank the Revere School Committee, the Revere Police Department and Mayor Arrigo for their support as we work together through these challenges,” Kelly stated.

  The superintendent stated that all adults, including parents, the media, educators and political leaders, owe it to children to help them use and navigate communications channels, such as social media, in ways that are safe and can result in real conversations and real solutions. She added that adults need to listen to students on platforms that do not invite divisiveness and vitriol but rather conversation, empathy and change to help have difficult conversations about the topics of sexism, racism and more.

Protestors applauded as more people joined the group (at left).
The procession walked down Broadway.
No Means No-2
Revere High School Daniel Jimenez held up a “No Means No: We Want Change” poster.
Approximately 150 high school students protested rape by walking out of fourth period and marching to City Hall last Friday afternoon.
Don_t Rape-2
“DON’T Get RAPED [slash over the D]” was on a sign.
Coersion is not consent-2
“Coercion is not consent” was on one of the signs at last Friday’s protest.
Tell Us Your Story-2
During last Friday’s protest in front of City Hall, Revere High School students Mekayla Broomfield and Adriana RoCale asked rape survivors to drop their story in a box.

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