Char-Lan demonstration admonished by principal

A Char-Lan student speaks during a rally on Friday, Oct. 14, 2016 in Williamstown, Ont. to save Char-Lan District High School. The school is one of 29 earmarked by the Upper Canada District School Board for possible closure. (Facebook Live via Newswatch Group)

WILLIAMSTOWN – The principal of Char-Lan District High School says the school won’t condone another demonstration like the one that happened Friday.

This, after scores of students walked out of class in the morning to demonstrate outside the Williamstown high school.

In a letter to parents Monday, Principal Cathy Cooper said what happened was an unauthorized activity and “we were very concerned by the staging of an authorized activity.”

While acknowledging there are strong views in the community given the recent news the Upper Canada District School Board has identified the school for closure, Cooper said staff “cannot condone the actions that students followed that interrupted the school day.”

Cooper added that it also circumvented staff’s legal obligation to supervise students and maintain a school schedule.

“It is essential that the school can fully discharge its legal obligations that it owes to student for their care throughout the entire school day,” she wrote.

The principal maintains the admonishment is not to limit the student voice but to make sure opinions are expressed through “appropriate channels.”

“By doing so, we ensure that the message – and not the method – is the focus for public attention,” she wrote.

Cooper said she has met with the student council and student senate and will continue to hold meetings as the school review happens through the winter.

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