HHS Planning ‘Peaceful Recognition Ceremony’ to Honor Parkland, Fla.

Haverhill High School. (WHAV News file photograph.)

Haverhill High School is sending love to Marjory Stoneman Douglas High. On Wednesday, March 14, members of the HHS community are set to gather for a “peaceful recognition ceremony” to honor the 17 students and faculty members killed in Parkland, Fla.

Haverhill High joins many schools across the state and nationwide for the impromptu day of remembrance, which falls on the one month anniversary of the school shooting.

Members of the school community reached out to Principal Beth Kitsos about holding a memorial ceremony, Kitsos said in a letter home to families last week.

“We stand in support of every student who chooses to participate in this peaceful 17-minute ceremony, which will be held in our main entrance circle similar to our annual 9/11 ceremony and will honor those lives lost on Valentine’s Day,” Kitsos said.

Students will not be penalized for participating in the ceremony, according to Kitsos. Teachers will remain in their classrooms and instruction will continue for those who do not wish to participate.

Kitsos applauded her students for showing their Hillie pride. “The lessons that we learn in school do not end once we close our textbooks. We believe that participating in this national event that honors all of those deeply affected by this tragedy will illustrate to our student body that civic engagement is a necessary part of protecting our treasured rights,” Kitsos recalled her students saying.

Students and families in Parkland, Fla., have mobilized into a group called March for Our Lives and plan to converge on Washington, D.C. on Saturday, March 24 to protest gun violence.