Iowa City students continue protest for social justice course

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IOWA CITY, Iowa (KCRG-TV9) -- Tuesday night, students protested and pleaded to the Iowa City school board to get a social justice class. It's something some students have been working on for a year and a half.

Last month, TV9 told you the district wasn't able to offer social justice classes at West High and City High because not enough students signed up. The district said it didn't have the budget for it. But the kids who fought for the class argue that the district has made exceptions before. Students showed up at the school board meeting Tuesday night asking for an apology for that delay.

The school board says they probably won't be able to make it an official class until fall 2019. But board members will try to set up the possibility to offer an optional course this coming school year. Although, talks are still early in the discussion. One of the students tells TV9 they're tired of what they called lies.

"For a lot of people it was just another sign that the school district just kind of didn't care about us and didn't care about how we felt and getting this course that we feel is really important and that we feel can help students deepen their understanding of others," said City High sophomore Mira Bohannan Kumar.

"I think they have the right to be disappointed. We've had this conversation for a period of time. They've been coming to us since the fall of 2016," said Iowa City School District Assistant Superintendent Matt Degner. "We've tried different things to try and get that course off the ground and haven't been successful in all of those efforts."

Students did make one final request that the district agreed on. They will have a liaison to speak to them while decisions are being made in order to avoid being cut out of the conversation in the future.