Schools plan activities, activists to hit the streets

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MANCHESTER — Plans continue to come together for activities related to a world-wide climate strike planned Sept. 20 around the globe including in the Northshire.

Manchester will host a protest, march and rally beginning at 11 a.m. beginning at Factory Point Town Green.

From there, people will march up Depot Street to the roundabout.

The actions on Sept. 20 are only the beginning of a full week of actions and activities in the area. A full schedule can be found at:

"A lot of this is coming from the grassroots. Our leaders aren't acting," said Anne Dolivo, of Earth Matters 350VT Manchester. "A lot of the grassroots organizations are feeling it's absolutely necessary to walk out of school, out of businesses. And demand that our leaders do something. Walk the talk."

The goal is to increase awareness, Dolivo said.

"It's really getting the word out, and having these leaders see how important it is for our youth that if we don't do something within the next 11 years, they will not have a future," she said. "It is that serious. We need to listen to the science, and we need to act on it."

The local chapter of Earth Matters and local school students are planning to strike Sept. 20, with church and school bells ringing at noon to signal an alarm, organizers said.

Local schools are participating in their own way.

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At Burr and Burton Academy, students will be allowed to strike with parental permission.

BBA senior Evelyn Seidner said students are calling on governments around the world to act.

"We protest the disastrous and destructive effects of climate change that are happening now: the Amazon is burning, oceans are acidifying, hurricanes are more frequent and devastating, the Arctic is melting," Seidner said in a column in today's Journal. "Our protest is to recognize that the impacts of climate change affect those who did the least to cause it. We need to come together as a global community to find a solution to this problem."

At Long Trail School in Dorset, head of school Seth Linfield said the school's student council is organizing events on campus in solidarity with Greta Thunberg and the student strike for the climate.

"Student activism is a core value at LTS," Linfield said. "Our students are highly interested in current issues and we strongly encourage our students to question and explore these issues."

Linfield said the disruption to class time will be minimized and any advocacy activity will be respectful of students who elect not to participate.

Maple Street School in Manchester is getting involved.Meredith Morin said teachers and students are coordinating activities throughout the day and will be "doing all that they can to promote climate resiliency right here in Manchester, right here at Maple Street School.

Morin said students are focusing on specific climate resiliency projects, some to honor the day and some that are year-long projects.

Patricia LeBoeuf of the Bennington Banner contributed to this report.


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