A large group of young students from Berkeley’s Emerson School walked off campus and through the Elmwood neighborhood Friday morning for the elementary school’s annual Martin Luther King Jr. march.
The kindergarten-through-fifth-grade students held signs proclaiming ‘Peace Black and White Love’ and ‘I have a dream of equality,’ as well a large artwork of the head of the civil-rights leader, and chanted, making a loop that included the Elmwood shopping district on College Avenue. Shoppers stopped to clap and take photos, and drivers in passing cars honked their horns in support.
Before they left campus the students were scheduled to watch the last speech given by First Lady Michelle Obama before she leaves office, and to hear a rap version of a Martin Luther King Jr. speech, according to Berkeley Unified spokesman Charles Burress.
Douglas Legg, a parent chaperone who accompanied the spirited children, said the assembly in the morning had been wonderful.
Emerson wasn’t the only school that held marches and events to mark MLK Day, which is on Monday Jan. 19, a public holiday. All grades at Berkeley Arts Magnet marched Friday morning too, for example.