The Student News Site of Hayfield Secondary School

The Harvester News

The Student News Site of Hayfield Secondary School

The Harvester News

The Student News Site of Hayfield Secondary School

The Harvester News

A life shaped by sports
Yahia Omar, Staff Writer • May 21, 2024

Hayfield students perform a walkout in solidarity with Palestine


“You don’t have to be Muslim, you don’t have to be Jewish, you don’t have to be Palestinian, you just have to be human,” Freshman Raina Ballouch said.

On November 8, 2023 Hayfield students performed a walkout during Advisory 4, the purpose? Address the events occurring in Palestine. This form of “call-to-action” is not shy to Hayfield as they’ve been used to shed light on previous occasions relevant to the student body. 

Senior Ruba Egami organized the event to bring awareness to the situations occurring in the Gaza Strip, Jerusalem and the West Bank. In order to prepare, Egami was given the usual FCPS guidelines that upheld SR&R. However, in an email with the Superintendent, several extra regulations were taken into consideration in order for the walkout to take place.

“The rules were mainly don’ts,” Egami said. “So I was not allowed to put a map of Palestine and label it was “Palestine ”. This is because people saw it as “offensive and rejected the state of Israel”,” 

Signs were made to spread awareness for Palestine

Many of these new rules were placed in response to how other schools organized their walkouts for Palestine.

In terms of advertising the event, flyers and posters were not able to be put up on the premises of the school. However, others took to alternative ways to promote that were both efficient and relevant to Hayfield students.

“Thankfully using social media, the walkout was a huge success and got people’s attention,” Egami said.

Hawksforpalestine, an Instagram account led by student-led advocates, curated a post on how to participate in the walkout in an organized manner. The advertisement gained 200+ likes by November 8th, providing for a sizable turnout during the walkout.

Due to specified instructions from social media, many students were seen waving flags and signs in solidarity with Palestine. Students also shared advocacy through cultural wear, the Keffiyeh a prominent sight across the crowd. Its significance lies within its history, as the garment has been used to show Palestinian unity and nationalism.


Students waving the Palestinian flag during the walkout

“[The Keffiyeh] represe[nts] olive trees and the agricultural way of life in Palestine including deep roots of the indigenous land,” Egami said.

Despite only being at the local level, many students have found the event to be helpful towards the cause. 

“We’re starting small [through] each highschool,” Sophomore Zara Shah said. “One highschool makes a big impact,”

With the walkout encouraging accessible ways to provide help for the Palestinian people, a large growth in call-to-action has increased across the Hayfield student body as a whole.

“Even though I’m over here, and they’re over there, there’s more that we can do than stay behind our phones to help the people of Palestine,” Sophomore Leayan Alhamdani said.

In its entirety, however, the voices of the walkout had a clear message to deliver; The people of Palestine are not alone.


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About the Contributor
Neia Anne Javier Dizon
Neia Anne Javier Dizon, Editor-in-chief
Hello! My name is Neia Anne Javier Dizon, an Editor-in-chief for Harvester News. Most of the time you’ll find me watching a Sofia Coppola film or Formula One!

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  • Y

    Yuriel AyalaApr 15, 2024 at 1:39 pm

    Hey, she is from my English class!

  • R

    Rania BaamraniNov 28, 2023 at 10:52 pm

    I love this Neia! Not only beautifully written but also amplifies the necessity of student-run publications in such a diverse community like Hayfield