Organisers estimated 2,000 to 3,000 Hong Kong students participated at the Secondary School Students Anti-ELAB Rally on Thursday at Edinburgh Place in Central.
The rally was granted the letter of no objection from the police. The rundown included speeches by guest speakers and participants, conversations between teachers and students, and counselling sessions by social workers.
Some students set up a supply station and provided water, snacks and masks for other demonstrators.
Cho, 16, was one of the volunteers who organised a booth at the rally. He told Young Post that his team started collecting supplies in Lok Fu and Kwun Tong two days ago, where a lot of citizens donated water and other materials needed to them.
“We are the next generation, it’s really great to see more people our age today. I know we’re not alone,” he said.
Towards the end of the rally, protesters turned on the flashlights on their phones, and belted out “Do You Hear the People Sing?” in unison. They then chanted, “Liberate Hong Kong, revolution of our times!”, “Hongkongers, add oil!” as well as “September second, class boycott!”
Over the past few days, a wave of school-based student concern groups have emerged on social media platforms in preparation for the weekly class boycott set to begin on September 2, the first day of school.
The Methodist Church Hong Kong Wesley College’s concern group leader told Young Post that they’re planning to walk out of their school’s commencement ceremony that day in defiance of the extradition bill.
They estimated 60 to 80 students would boycott the ceremony. However, they added their school was also considering cancelling the ceremony.
They are currently communicating with their school regarding building a Lennon wall on campus. They also want a guarantee from the school that the strikers will not be punished.
“For the school strike, we will skip classes, but we won’t stop learning. We will hold other events at school during class hours, like screenings of documentaries or inviting some speakers over to talk to us,” said Wan, 17, a member of the concern group.
“As a Hong Kong secondary school student, it’s my responsibility to care about social issues. We want to show everyone in society that we, secondary school students, also walk with them.”
Another group of committee members from a school in Wan Chai told Young Post that they were still collecting opinions from their fellow students as to the form of class boycott.
They said they wanted to create this platform to inform their schoolmates more about the movement.
“In our concern group, some were active fighters at the frontline, whilst some were more keen on promoting about the events in terms of making posters and writing articles, but we’ve all been very involved in this movement and we share the same goal of fighting for our future,” said Chan, 16, one of the committee members.