July 14, 2020
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Credo students demand strong environmental action

  • Yasen Stoev using a drone to indicate the students forming a SOS.

By: Lanny Lowery
March 22, 2019

Credo student leaders met outside the main office just before noon last Fri. to set up final preparations for a student walkout and march.  More than 300 Credo students were expected to join them momentarily as they would become a part of student-led ecology strikes being held in towns throughout the world.

Associated Student Body President Chloe Madden reviewed the plan with One Planet Captains Fiona Jacobsen-Sarter and Shayla Rose-Brown while teacher-advisor Marika Ramsden made sure that all was set.  

Madden reminded the leaders: “Set up the SOS photo.  Every person needs a sign.  Hold signs above heads; then hold the signs in front.  From there we walk the route to Camino Colegio, right on E. Cotati, then right on Bodway, then back to Credo.  Everyone be safe, cooperative with police, non aggressive-non confrontational.  Then we will hang the signs in the school hallways after the march.”  

The purpose of the event was to bring attention to problems with climate change.  The goal of these leaders and students throughout the world was to get political leaders to take significant action against climate change.  Floods, droughts, wildfires and hurricanes are becoming more frequent and severe as a result of climate change.  Youth hope to save the earth for themselves and future generations by lobbying for action now.

The SOS photo showed the Credo students forming the letters on the school quad.  A drone flew over and captured this human distress signal.  The 300 plus students followed the youth leaders’ directions after they had flowed out of their classrooms.

The march then proceeded in a very orderly manner.  Students from Live Oak School in Petaluma joined the protestors as they moved toward E. Cotati Avenue.  Everyone followed the leaders’ directions for safety, cooperation with authorities and in being civil during the protest.  

Cotati-Rohnert Park Unified School Board Trustee Tim Nonn joined me as we brought up the rear of the march.  We both felt the infectious vigor and positive nature of these young people.  Students centered on their mission and demonstrated respect and concern throughout the march.  

Student Body President Chloe Madden commented after the demonstration.  The march and demonstration “went really well.  We were walking for about an hour with about 200 kids.  I was super excited to lead cheers as we walked through downtown Cotati.”

Clearly, Credo students, as well as teachers and administrators, live the school’s one planet theme.  They don’t just study ecology and earth problems; they do something about them.  These young people with their enthusiasm and energy restore hope for the future of this planet.  It was an afternoon well spent.