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April 28, 2010

N.J.: Mass School Walkouts Organized on Facebook

nj.jpg Some 18,000 students in New Jersey protested against school budget cuts (including the arts) by walking out of class on April 27, 2010, in response to a protest organized on Facebook. Winnie Hu, in the N.Y. Times (4/27/10), called it "one of the largest grass-roots demonstrations to hit New Jersey in years. The mass walkouts were inspired by Michelle Ryan Lauto, an 18-year-old aspiring actress and a college freshman, and came a week after voters rejected 58 percent of school district budgets put to a vote across the state. “All I did was make a Facebook page,” said Lauto, who graduated last year from Northern Valley Regional High School in Old Tappan, N.J. “Anyone who has an opinion could do that and have their opinion heard. I would love to see kids in high school step up and start their own protests and change things in their own way.” Lauto alerted 600 Facebook friends to her message calling for a student walkout and asked them to pass it on. [LINK] Posted by Linda Frye Burnham

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