Students across the Tri-Valley joined others around the country in walking out of class Wednesday morning to support gun reform and to commemorate the victims of the Parkland school shooting.
The national event was intended to throw support behind gun reform at a Congressional level, as well as to commemorate the victims of the Parkland, Fla. shooting in February.
"It is imperative that we, as students, sustain the conversation on gun reform and stand up for our basic right to feel safe at school," student organizers wrote on the Facebook page for the Dougherty Valley High event.
On Wednesday, students at each of the district's middle and comprehensive high schools participated, according to Elizabeth Graswich, the district's spokeswoman.
The activities included organized walks (mostly on-campus), speeches, moments of silence to honor the victims and passive protests, Graswich said.
The district and school administrators had been preparing for the events for several weeks.
"Our students who participated acted maturely, focused on the loss of lives in Florida and on participating in the democratic process in a respectful manner," she said in an email.
"Staff worked together to ensure that all students were safe. We are grateful for the students and staff in SRVUSD who demonstrated yesterday that coming together in a peaceful manner is the way to engage one another in respectful conversations."
Student leaders at DVHS -- specifically, members of the Black Student Union, Gender-Sexuality Alliance and FemEquality groups -- also sent letters to Assemblywoman Catharine Baker, State Sen. Steve Glazer and U.S. Rep. Eric Swalwell.
"As high school students, we've grown up under the specter of horrific school shootings, from Virginia Tech to Sandy Hook," students wrote. "As high school students, we are afraid -- literally afraid -- to go to school and get an education...But as high school students, we've also grown up recognizing the power of our voices, the impact of our collective action."
Also in the letter, they urged the local politicians to support proposed gun control bills and to publicly denounce legislation that would arm teachers or increase the number of armed security guards on school campuses.
"Such proposals ignore the broad consensus maintained by students, teachers, campus police, and administrators -- that the militarization of our schools would be severely harmful, particularly to students of color, and would cause significant damage to our learning environment," the students wrote.
In neighboring Pleasanton, about 1,000 Foothill High students gathered for their own walkout event, circling around the front science building, and then returning to the quad for a rally, all the while chanting "Enough is enough."
Sophomore Alexander Chen, who was one of the event's organizers, said the Parkland, Fla. shooting last month was a "wake-up call."
"We hope to send a message to Congress and the government, that everyone is in on this issue, and we all call for reform, even teenagers who may not have the right to vote yet," Chen said. "And that gun reform is definitely needed across the country."