Stoneman Douglas Students Make Emotional Return to School for Orientation as Classes Resume Wednesday
Thousands of students, parents and faculty returned to the campus of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on Sunday for the first time since the Feb. 14 school shooting that killed 17 people at the Parkland, Florida school.
School officials invited students and parents to return for an optional back-to-school orientation to prepare for the reopening of classes on Wednesday, reports NBC Miami. Staff members were scheduled to return to school on Monday.
It was an emotional return, with teachers and students embracing one another, some of whom hadn’t seen each other since the gunfire began, The New York Times reports. Many wore t-shirts that said “Douglas Strong” and “Parkland United.”
Meanwhile, students, some of whom have become prominent voices in the fight to prevent gun violence, took to Twitter to share the emotional experience — and their commitment to preventing future tragedies from occurring.
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Student Jaclyn Corin tweeted “this movement is for the 17” who died in the attack.
Cameron Kasky tweeted, “It is GOOD TO BE HOME.”
Another student Alex Wind, below a photograph of a sign at the school with the Ghandi quote, “Be the change you wish to see the world,” and tweeted, “I will. I promise.”
The suspected shooter, identified as 19-year-old Nikolas Cruz, is in custody and is being held without bond. He has not entered a plea after being charged with 17 counts of premeditated murder — one for each person he allegedly killed.
The building where the shooting occurred, Building 12, will not reopen, ABC News reports.
On Monday, teachers came to the school for a planning meeting ahead of the start of classes, the Sun-Sentinel reports. They were greeted by a small group of supporters carrying signs.
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In a post on Twitter, Broward County Superintendent Robert W. Runcie asked media to not fly helicopters over the school when students return “out of respect for the students, teachers and parents who are making this request.”
A GoFundMe account has been set up to help families of victims of the attack.