- Clay: "Just to be clear, I don't actually have a plan.-I'm kinda following your lead."
- Jessica: "Me I thought I was following you."
- Clay: "No, I."
- Justin: "Hey, you guys gotta figure something out, because, I mean, everyone..."
- Tony: "Yeah, it's uh...it's kinda a thing."
- ― Clay, Jessica, Tony, and Justin meeting outside watching every student follow behind them.[src]
The Student Riot is an event led by Jessica Davis at Liberty High School. The students were protesting for the removal of the security infrastructure that had infiltrated their school, and decided to stand their ground against Principal Bolan and the SROs.
The Hallway Fight
While in the hallway, Diego confronts Justin about their rivalry for Jessica, and Diego wanting to know why she would choose Justin over him. Tensions flair between them when Diego admits he listened to Bryce's tape and believes Jessica is only with him to protect Justin, to which he further accuses Justin of murdering Bryce. Justin attempts to dismiss Diego but gets enraged when Diego threats to beat him and reveals that he was the one who attacked Zach. Justin shoves Diego and the two begin to fight. Right as the two start to get rough, a guard breaks up the fight and orders Justin to return to class while he pins Diego against the lockers and searches him. The guard accuses Diego of starting the fight and singles him out based on his race. A crowd of students begins to form and witness Justin helping Diego apprehend the guard, as the guard pulls his gun out on both of them. The crowd of students watches the guard handcuff Diego and arrest him, catching the eye of Jessica.
In response to Diego being apprehended by the guard, Jessica and Clay, backed by the rest of the student body, confront Principal Bolan regarding how not only Diego was treated by the guard, but other students as well. Jessica first confronts Bolan by stating that innocent people are being treated like criminals, in which Bolan dismissively counters this by stating that he was told that Diego and Justin were fighting. Jessica further counters this by stating that it's not only Diego that was being signaled out but other students were being subjected to this as well. Bolan tires to reclaim the students' attention by stating that the issue was being addressed and that they should go back to class. Jessica responds with a strong "no", to which Bolan warns her that she should not make matters worse and that they need to return to class. Clay cuts in restating Jessica's previous statement that they are not going to return to class. Bolan responds with a rather loose promise that the school will look into the situation, that Diego is being released, the guard will be reprimanded if necessary, and that the issue will be further addressed, to the dismay and disgust of the students. Jessica responds with "fuck that. Enough is enough" with Justin agreeing with her. Bolan responds stating that he understood their point without the use of profanity, to which Clay remarks "Fuck you, motherfucker", to the amusement of the rest of the student body. Growing irritated, Bolan demands that the students return to class, or that there will be consequences, to which Jessica replies "Bring it on. We're not afraid." Clay replies that they are finally doing something, which causes Bolan to ask what they are trying to do. Clay and Jessica lock eyes with each other, look behind them to the front doors, to each other again, and finally walk out with the rest of the students clearing a path for them to do so, with them following, Bolan tries to get their attention and make them return by asking, "What do you think you're doing?" to which Tyler casually responds that he believes it's a walkout. Bolan sarcastically thanks Tyler for that comment and promptly sighs.
Once outside Clay and Jessica start to wonder the next step in their plan, to which Justin and Tony follow them, telling them to think fast. The four then stop and turn around to see almost every student exiting the school with them. Meanwhile, Zach and Alex argue inside whether or not to join the walkout. Zach calls it waste of time, however, while Alex is hesitant for his own safety, but he feels like he is letting Jess down by not being there. To which Zach convinces Alex to "Make some noise." Back outside, Diego arrives and asks the crowd what to do next? Luke suggest violence, Cyrus suggests causing a power outage and setting fires, however Ani moves through the crowd and hands Jessica a megaphone. Jessica uses the megaphone to incite unity and support within the crowd, while Ani starts chanting, causing the crowd to begin chanting: "Hey-hey, ho-ho, SROs have got to go!" By the gymnasium, Alex and Zach start breaking windows with a baseball bat. While the two are vandalizing, Zach expresses a fatalistic viewpoint on his future stating "My life is fucked forever.", while Alex encourages him to look at the other areas he's good at. Before they can cause further damage, the two run inside when they hear a police car approach as two officers get out. In the parking-lot, Clay and Jessica make demands with Principal Bolan and Dean Foundry to remove all forms of surveillance, bleed-out drills, and shooter drills. Reluctant, the two teachers argue they are following state laws that are designed to keep students "safe". Jessica and Clay deny the statements stating for the two to break the laws because they are "wrong". With both sides being uncompromising, tensions only rise. Back inside, Zach and Alex hide inside of the main office and witness the officers run past them. Worried the police will find them eventually, Zach and Alex start to barricade the door. Outside, the students watch the two teachers stand beside armored riot police guards. Jessica and Clay then realize the guards and teachers don't want the students to resume classes, instead they want the students removed from the school grounds. Officer Miller announces on an speaker that the students have two minutes to vacant the area or they will be forcibly removed. Tyler notices Tony trying to flee through the crowd, Tyler tries to convince him to stay, but Tony dismisses it because this could mark his third strike. Once the time is up, the students stand their ground as the officers approach them banging on their shields. When the officers get close, Jessica shouts "Now!" as the students begin throwing their notebooks and other school supplies at the guards.
Inside Foundry's office, Zach starts to vandalize Foundry's things: breaking glass certificate seals and fragile objects, knocking over folders and binders, and kicking his char. Zach stops when he notices his file on Foundry's desk, inside of it he finds a piece of paper (later revealed to be a letter of recommendation from Coach Kerba). Alex notices this, however before he can question it further, officers begin to bang on the barricaded door, ordering them to open up. Zach demands Alex to leave through the backdoor and go find Charlie. When Alex reluctantly leaves, Zach crumbles up the paper and pockets it, while taking a batting pose as he approaches the officers. Back outside, tension rises as the students start charging the guards and ramming into them. One of the officers apprehends Estela and takes her out of the fight. Ani then realizes their out of supplies to throw and questions Jessica on what to do next? Jessica responds by stating they fight. Jessica and Ani charge the officers, while Justin grabs Jessica, stating she can't get arrested and she has to protect herself. Jessica states that she stopped caring about herself when Justin gave up on himself, and shoves him off her. Jessica then returns to attacking the guard and spits on his face shield, prompting the guard to hit her in the stomach. Diego freezes in shock as an enraged Justin then charges the guards, while one of them pulls Jessica away. Tyler and the Outcasts attempt to defend Cyrus when he gets pinned to ground by an officer. A stunned Clay freezes as some of the students record the fighting, while many of the students begin to flee from the area. Justin then throws Clay the megaphone; using it, Clay stands on top of the Principal's car and convinces the leaving students to stay and fight to fix the system because if they don't then no one else will. With a battle-cry, Clay leads the charge of students. Clay attacks the guards but gets apprehended, Charlie attempts to help him but gets hit in the back of the head and knocked out. Ani assists a hurt Jessica and helps carry her away from the fight. Justin attacks a riot guard but gets pinned to the ground by him, so Diego shoves the guard off of him and helps Justin up. Justin thanks him, while Diego questions Justin about why Jessica can't get arrested. Justin's silence leads Diego to believe that Jessica is the one who killed Bryce just before he is tackled by an officer. Just before Tyler can get handcuffed with cable ties by a guard pinning him down, Tony returns to kick the guard off of him and provides a distraction for Tyler to run away. The guard apprehends Tony and begins to arrest him. Just then, Officer Ted intervenes saving Tony from his third strike and wanting to pull Tony out of the fight. Tony argues to let him go so he can help his friends, a reluctant Officer Ted lets him go, exclaiming to "Live to fight another day." Alex arrives looking for Charlie, until he finds Charlie still unconscious in the street. Alex tries to wake Charlie, when he then realizes there is a car on fire. Alex shouts about the fire and pulls Charlie away from the burning car, Justin then shouts at Ani and Jessica to get down as the car explodes.
Dr. Ellman questions Clay about the fight and if anyone found out who started the fire. During which the therapist reveals footage from Principal Bolan that shows Clay lighting a textbook on fire and dropping it in the Principal's car. Clay then answers he doesn't remember doing that. Clay then realizes he's the one who did all the crimes at the school and school events: The graffiti on the Main office doors that stated "Monty was framed", terrorizing the students during the Senior camping trip, and vandalizing the school cameras.