Walton High School walkout organizers include, from left, sophomore Natalie Carlomagno, senior Emma Fletcher, freshman Divya Virmani, junior Anisa Handa, and senior Madeleine Deisen. The students worked weeks in advance of Wednesday's walkout to organize classmates, meet with administrators, and spread their message calling for gun-law reforms. AJC/Vanessa McCray
Photo: Vanessa McCray
Photo: Vanessa McCray

Cobb students face discipline for walking out

Natalie Carlomagno plans to get up from her desk at 10 a.m. today, leave her Advanced Placement language class, and walkout of Walton High School.

The 15-year-old sophomore will join students from across Cobb County and the nation who are briefly leaving school to protest gun violence and call for tighter gun laws. Unlike their peers in Atlanta and DeKalb, Cobb participants have been warned they will be punished.

“There’s been an incredible pushback. It’s been a lot more difficult for us to organize this and plan it, not only because our school is unsupportive of it, but we’ve had such a lack of information about what’s going on,” said Natalie.

Walton High School walkout organizers include, from left, sophomore Natalie Carlomagno, senior Emma Fletcher, freshman Divya Virmani, junior Anisa Handa, and senior Madeleine Deisen. The students worked weeks in advance of Wednesday's walkout to organize classmates, meet with administrators, and spread their message calling for gun-law reforms. AJC/Vanessa McCray
Photo: Vanessa McCray

Cobb officials, who have expressed concern about safety and classroom disruptions, declined to publicly specify what that discipline will be. Students have heard it could vary from school to school or depend on if they’ve had prior offenses. The vague and vacillating warnings have left questions in some students minds about what might happen to them afterward. But that has not dissuaded them from action.

Read the full story about what these young activists are doing and facing in MyAJC.com.

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