Medford high school students stage walkout calling for strike resolution

At 8:35 a.m. sharp, the five-minute "tardy" bell rang at North Medford High School and within seconds students began to spill out of their first class of the day and into the surrounding commons.

The student walkout was announced by North and South Medford high school students Wednesday and circulated via word of mouth and social media.

Students arrived for class at 8:30 a.m. as usual, but at 8:35 a.m. made their mass exodus.

Guest teachers stared on as all or the majority of their students left. Several students reported all their classmates had left and others said only two or three remained in class.

"I think it's important that kids express themselves, and this is how they do that," said Todd Bloomquist, director of secondary education. "They are frustrated too."

Bloomquist said that he appreciated that the students were leaving in a "respectful" and "thoughtful" manner.

Jessica Morga, a NMHS junior, and about 20 of her classmates got up and walked out of their critical thinking class.

"There were only two left in the classroom," she said.

Many students lingered in the commons on their phones or visiting with friends, but others headed out to the picket lines to join their teachers.

North senior Krystina Beech and junior Tyler Rice were two of three students that walked out of their pre-calculus class.

"Ten people said they would, but they chickened out," Beech said.

"Our sub was just staring at us," Rice added.

"I think what everyone is trying to do is to tell the board and the union this need to be done," Rice said. "At this point I don't really care who wins. I just want my teacher back."

— Teresa Thomas

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