National School Walkout: Newsom calls on California colleges and universities to support students in gun violence protest


SACRAMENTO - Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom called on the the University of California, California State Universities, and California's Community Colleges to voice their protection for current and prospective students planning to participate in the National School Walkout, scheduled for March 14, 2018 at 10am across all time zones.

As the House Speaker and Senate Leader obfuscate on reforms to combat gun violence, students have stepped up to organize a seventeen-minute peaceful school walkout. Students at the University of California and the California Community College systems have been directly impacted by mass shootings in recent years.

Gavin Newsom also serves as a California State University Trustee, and University of California Regent. The text of that letter is as follows (original copy attached):

Dear President Napolitano, Chancellor White, and Chancellor Oakley,

I write to request that California's public segments of higher education offer current and prospective students clear reassurances that their unexcused participation in the national school walkout to protest gun violence on 14 March 2018, will not impact prospective applications to California Community Colleges, California State Universities, and the University of California.

California's public institutions of post-secondary education fosters, promotes, and values civic participation. Student-led movements like this can have an incredible impact not only on civic discourse, but also on the individual growth of each student that chooses to participate.

Further, it is unequivocally clear - as the communities surrounding U.C. Santa Barbara and Santa Monica College can most recently and tragically testify - that students and college campuses have repeatedly been innocent victims of the nation's failure to address the endemic of gun violence.

The proposed seventeen-minute protest, conducted peacefully and lawfully, does not create a substantial disruption, nor infringe on the rights of other students. Current post-secondary students that choose to participate in lawful and peaceful national movements of civic engagement, such as this, should not suffer punishment. High school students who participate should not have their applications adversely affected.

University public higher education institutions across the county have already made similar statements - including some of your individual campuses. It is my hope that we join them in nurturing and supporting our future leaders.


Lieutenant Governor, University of California Regent, and California State University Trustee