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Student-driven MLK march focuses on civil rights issues

On Monday, Manhattan Country School?s eighth-graders will lead

On Monday, Manhattan Country School’s eighth-graders will lead a march through the streets of Manhattan in honor of the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. (Credit: Manhattan Country School)

If you and the kids plan to head into the Manhattan on Martin Luther King Day, you can join in on this student-driven celebration.

On Monday at 10 a.m., Manhattan Country School’s eighth-graders “will lead a peaceful and inspirational march through the streets of New York City in honor of the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.,” said Corris Little, communications coordinator for the school.

The students chose the route of the march and the theme themselves, Little said. The theme,  “In 25 Years: Reflecting on the Civil Rights Struggles of the Past, Looking Toward Justice for Tomorrow,”  will commemorate the 25th anniversary of the private school’s MLK March.

“Every year for 25 years, children have researched, written and spoken out about a civil rights issues of their choice. One of the founding goals of Manhattan Country School, which was based on the principles of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., is to teach students to be activists. From a young age, students are encouraged to discover their voices, stand up for their beliefs, and work together to create positive change.”

The speeches, to be delivered at  points along the march route, will address contemporary civil rights issues, ranging from gun control to animal rights to mining in Africa, Little said.

For instance, student Savio Zigbi-Johnson plans to speak about access to resources and equality in Liberia while Sam Liang will address gun control and Caroline Rodenbush will speak about animal rights.

The event is free and the public can join in at any point along the route. Starting time and location is 10 a.m. at Gracie Mansion. Ending time and location is 1 p.m. at Manhattan Country School.

The march route:
1. Gracie Mansion (East End Avenue and East 89th Street)
2. ASPCA (424 East 92nd Street, between First and York avenues)
3. 92nd Street Y (East 92nd Street and Lexington Avenue)
4. Dream Charter School (232 East 102nd Street, Between Second and Third avenues)
5. The Museum of the City of New York (1220 5th Avenue, between East 103rd and East 104th streets)
6. Manhattan Country School (7 East 96th Street, between Fifth and Madison avenues)

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