Taking inspiration from 15-year-old Greta Thunberg – the Swedish student who has been sitting outside the parliament in central Stockholm to draw attention towards global climate crisis and the failure of countries to take urgent action – hundreds of Australian students are planning to skip school as a mark of protest against politicians who have failed to recognize climate change as an emergency.
Fourteen-year-old Milou Albrecht, a year 8 student at Castlemaine Steiner school in Victoria, her classmate Harriet O’Shea Carre, and 11-year-old Callum Bridgefoot from Castlemaine North primary school, started by protesting last week outside of the offices of their local representatives. They’ve been joined by 50 students from local schools and are planning weekly events.
And what began as a small local protest is growing into a nationwide movement. Students in Melbourne, Sydney, Canberra, Perth, Hobart, the Whitsundays, Lismore, the Gold Coast, Albury-Wodonga and the Sunshine Coast are planning to walk out of classes this month.