Honoring Ruby Bridges

Scholastic Kids Press
By Munveer Singh

On November 17, 2021, students across the country participated in the first national “Ruby Bridges Walk to School Day” in honor of the civil rights pioneer. In 1960, at the age of six, Ruby became the first Black student to attend an all-White school in New Orleans, Louisiana. 

“The walk celebrates her victory and honors the freedom that we can go to school without being harassed,” said Jonathan Covacha, the principal of Martin Elementary School in San Mateo, California. Students at his school came up with the idea for the national walk.

The idea for a national walk began in 2017, when a fifth-grade class at Martin Elementary learned Ruby’s story. When the students discovered that Ruby’s neighbors walked behind her to show support, they decided to host a Walk to School Day...

In 2021, the students’ initiative got legislative support when California State Senator Josh Becker introduced Resolution 59, which declared November 14 Ruby Bridges Walk to School Day. The resolution passed unanimously in the State Senate. 

More than 200 students at Martin Elementary participated in the 2021 walk. Since November 14 fell on a Sunday, the students walked to school together a few days later. 

State Senator Becker accompanied the students.