Petition aims to cancel schools across the district


After the Clark County School District made the decision to cancel all after-school activities on March 12, 2020, a petition to close all CSSD schools was uploaded to for students across the district to sign. It has gained over 10,000 signatures since its creation.

Spring Valley sophomore Mark Marchlewski created  the petition around 7 p.m., and he advocates strongly for the closing of CCSD schools. 

“I wanted to start the petition to encourage the CCSD Board of Trustees and Superintendent Jesus Jara to understand the student, staff and faculty perspective on COVID-19,” Marchlewski said. “It had felt as though they had made many decisions (ex. canceling trips, sports, etc.) without consulting with others, so the petition is a way of the district hearing our voices.” 

The issue is a concern of safety for Marchlewski, who is around people who are at a higher risk of being negatively impacted by the virus. 

“That’s why I want to make sure that I’m at a low risk of getting the virus,” Marchlewski said. “To ensure that I have a low-risk, I believe that it is best that we close schools and transition to online classes, as they have done at UNLV.” 

Sophomore Rían Basquiat, who signed the petition this morning, agrees with Marchlewski over why CCSD should cancel school. The cancellation of after-school activities fuelled her reasoning as well. 

“What’s the point in canceling all after-school activities, if we are still hanging out with hundreds of other kids during the school day?” Basquiat said. “Plus, I think canceling school would be the best option for safety purposes.”

Other students are finding it difficult to justify wanting to cancel school and sign the petition. 

“I need a school environment in order to really do work, and so I feel like, if we were to go online, I wouldn’t be able to focus and apply myself as much,” junior Ivana Karastoeva said. “As long as we wash our hands and keep our school equipment clean, and students who feel sick stay home, I do think that the school is a safe environment.”

Karastoeva also feels that the situation may have been exaggerated in the minds of the public. There may not even be a need to cancel school as long as everyone uses the recommended hygiene practices, such as washing hands, according to her. 

While in school, many students noted that they weren’t able to access the petition on the school WiFi. The reasoning for this is unclear, as other petitions on were still accessible. 

“[The inability to access the petition is] very interesting, as I’ve heard about that too,” Marchlewski said. “I’d like to give the Clark County School District the benefit of doubt and say it’s an innocent mistake, but [it] is very suspicious that they would block from school WiFi, especially when students have mentioned that has worked in the past.”

Marchlewski sees why CCSD would potentially block the petition, reason being that it may hurt the district. 

“It’s not in CCSD’s best interest to allow students access to information that may go against what the district has said/acted on,” Marchlewski said. “CCSD, in my opinion and experience, is welcoming of student, parent and faculty opinion, up until that opinion is against CCSD.” 

As of now, CCSD has yet to make any formal decision on canceling schools and has not commented on the petition.