FORT SASKATCHEWAN -- Seventy-nine anti-cruise students at Fort Saskatchewan (Alberta) High School face disciplinary action in the wake of a sit-in and march on Town Hall and the Fort Mall during class time on February 22.
High school principal Doug H. MacDonald handed one student a day's suspension for 'defiance' and cancelled another's work experience placement at the Fort Saskatchewan Junior High School.
Twenty-two student protesters have been subject to attendance checks, and "memos relating to this incident" have been placed in their school files.
Cameron Fairweather, a Grade 11 student, refuted MacDonald's claim that protesting students just wanted to "skip" classes, and accused MacDonald of intimidation tactics to end the sit-in.
"Mr. MacDonald told me that my work experience placement at the Fort Junior High School was cancelled because of this," said Fairweather. "He said they didn't want me to have a 'captive audience' for my ideas." Fairweather was scheduled to teach physical education classes at the Junior High.
Two of the protesters also found trouble waiting for them at home. Their father "grounded" them pending completion of an assignment he developed in order to "prevent them from adopting a 'sheep-like' mentality in matters like this protest.
Among other things, the students were required to shade in, on a map, those nations which were "communist governed or controlled in 1935" and those which, as of December 1984, were either "communist governed, controlled or were subject to a communist military presence."
The students were also told to read the Communist Manifesto and to deduce whether or not "the avowed purpose or world communism is world domination."
Finally, they were instructed to "research the word 'disinformation' as the term applies to communist strategy and relate it to the anti-cruise peace movement presently demonstrating in western countries."
The two students completed the assignment in two days, during which time they were not allowed to use the TV set, visit with friends, or leave the house. The result was that one student "missed a Sea Cadet survival camp rn~r th~ w(~ rn~1 "
Peace Magazine May 1985, page 7. Some rights reserved.
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