After a summer of being tear gassed, can Hong Kong protesters go back to being students?

(CNN)Welcome signs, colorful banners and campus maps are plastered over Hong Kong's colleges and high schools.

It's the first week of school, but there's one problem -- thousands of students are missing from the classrooms.
At 10 of the city's 13 universities, students are staging a class boycott, and student union leaders estimate that more than 100 secondary schools also planned class strikes.
    It's the latest move in pro-democracy protests that have rocked Hong Kong for the past three months, and the students say it will continue until the government responds to all of their five core demands. So far, Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam has acquiesced to one: the full withdrawal of the bill that would have allowed extradition to mainland China, and which sparked the protests in June.
    Hong Kong protesters' 5 demands

    1. Fully withdraw the extradition bill
    2. Set up an independent inquiry to probe police brutality
    3. Withdraw the characterization of protests as "riots"
    4. Release those arrested at protests
    5. Implement universal suffrage in Hong Kong

    While the demonstrations have spanned all demographics, young people have become the face of the movement, and some have been at the most violent, extreme end of the clashes. More than 1,100 protesters have been arrested this summer -- one 13-year-old was arrested for being in possession of two petrol bombs, police say.
    Now students are going through the motions of starting a new school year, buying books and registering for classes. It's a familiar routine, but nothing about it feels normal.
    "The city is dying," said Kris Fan, a 17-year-old high-school student. "We can't just sit here and read our books. That's no use. I think the city is more important than our academics."
    Students at Ying Wa College in Hong Kong boycotted classes and the school year opening ceremony on September 2, 2019.
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