Know Your Rights

For Students

Students' rights

High school students confront U.S. Marine recruiters and their supporters in front of the recruiting station, Berkeley, February 12.High school students have an advantage when it comes to organizing to demilitarize their schools and counter military recruiters. The Constitution guarantees them an inherent right to speak out on controversial topics at their schools as long as they don't violate legitimate time, place and manner rules. And when it comes to convincing district trustees or superintendents, students can speak with authority about what they are experiencing in their schools.

For more information on students' rights, check out the toolkits and guides.


Student organizing

Start a club to do CR work.  Talk to your friends or folks you think might be interested in participating.  Have a meeting with a few people to start the process. Assign tasks like:

  • Find out about the rules regarding clubs/organizations at your school
  • Begin the process of starting a club (paperwork if necessary, etc.)
  • Make a flyer about the group
  • Make copies of the flyer
  • Pass out flyers
  • Hang flyers up at the school, around town at libraries, events, stores, etc.
  • Get an advisor - talk to some teachers who might be supportive and are willing to help out (make copies, reserve meeting rooms, talk to the administration, offer advice, etc.)

Look for allies

Allies are often available in the community to support and assist students who wish to educate their peers and organize. Use the National Directory of Youth Demilitarization Groups to see if any such groups are located in your area.

College information sessions/workshops

You could invite a representative from a college or someone who has been in college (especially a young person) to lead info. sessions/workshops on college, including some of the following topics:

  • What is college for? Why go to college?
  • What is college like? The basics.
  • Can I afford college?  How to get financial aid.
  • Figuring out what to study/choosing a major.

Some colleges have active outreach programs to help students answer the above questions.  Click here to learn about one example, The California Student Opportunity and Access Program, which is instrumental in improving the flow of information about postsecondary education and financial aid while raising the achievement levels of low-income elementary and secondary school students, or geographic regions with low-eligibility or college participation rates.

Here are some recommended links available to better inform you as a student. This is a work in progress and NNOMY will be adding new documents as they are prepared and as policies change that effect enlistment. Check back periodically.


The National Network Opposing the Militarization of Youth 2018-19 Back-to-school Kit for Counter-recruitment and School Demilitarization Organizing is now available to assist you in understanding the work, your rights, and the challenges to return to the public schools to counter-recruit. Please visit this page and review the materials we have assembled for you and feel free to ask questions as well at Our Contact Page and we will do our best to answer you or your group in a timely manner.



Organizations you should know:

Articles on the web:


 Revised 07/02/2020

Know Your Rights

Stop Kids Going to WarWe live in dangerous times when our government is pursuing permanent wars in the name of human rights and democracy building. Theses claims do not hold up to the facts. The federal protections such as the FERPA Act to protect our children's privacy are not being enforced in our schools and the Pentagon gives the ASVAB test in many schools across the nation as a mandatory requirement when it is only voluntary. All of this is for data mining to then use for aggressive military recruitment of our youth, especially those from disadvantaged families. No one will protect our children but an informed public.

Consider being an activist parent, teacher, veteran, religious clergy, or student who wants a different kind of future for their lives and their community.  The health and ethical toll of permanent war in America is costing us all a sustainable and truly secure future. You have rights but you must first know what they are and then to insist upon them with misinformed school officials and military recruiters.

Use the following links to learn about your legal rights:

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NNOMYnews reports on the growing intrusions by the Department of Defense into our public schools in a campaign to normalize perpetual wars with our youth and to promote the recruitment efforts of the Pentagon.


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