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Grade twelve student planning sit-ins to protest teachers' dispute

An image from Tomm's YouTube video, "It's Our Education"

A grade twelve student in Prince George is organizing sit-ins until teachers and the provincial government make progress in their dispute. Amanda Tomm attends Kelly Road Secondary School. She says students must have a voice in the dispute. 

 "We shouldn't be in-between BCTF and BCSPEA's fight. So I've organized a sit-in on June 2 where everybody gathers in their commons rooms, gyms, or multi-purpose rooms, and they sit there until something happens."

Tomm is organizing the sit-in at her own school, and is encouraging students across the province to do the same. In a Facebook post for the event she writes, "If they kick us out then we will tent it outside but do your best to stay inside (peacefully). We need to protest our rights in a peaceful, mature fashion, in order to make sure our point gets across."

Tomm says job action and lock-outs have already affected her schoolwork. As a badminton player, she is missing some classes to take part in a provincial tournament and has faced challenges making up for missed time. 

"I'm missing a test in Spanish. And the only way I was able to make up that test before I leave was to skip another class. And that was really frustrating." 

Tomm also says she decided to drop chemistry because she can't get extra help during the lunch hour. She worries that will affect her chances of getting into post-secondary programs. 

 Even though Tomm is nearly done with the public school system, she still feels it's important to make a point. 

"Other students will still be affected, so I still think it matters."

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