Class Valedictorian Says School Barred Her From Speech

A class valedictorian at a Los Angeles charter school said she won't be allowed to deliver a graduation speech because she participated in a sit-in to protest teacher layoffs.

Johnathan Williams, the founder of The Accelerated School in South Los Angeles, said Wednesday he cannot discuss the student's allegations because of the school's privacy policy, according to The Associated Press.

"I see it as retaliation," the student, Aurora Ponce, told the Los Angeles Times. "I just want to speak during graduation."

Ponce told the newspaper that she also was not allowed to tutor. She said she was relying on the job to pay for college expenses.

Parents and student protested outside the school Wednesday.

Ponce plans to attend UC Davis in August.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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