All around the country, teachers and students took a timeout from traditional classwork Friday to make a stand for an increasingly visible and important lesson in schools: bullying.
Schools throughout the area participated in the first Stand 4 Change Day, too, where students demonstrated their commitment to ending bullying by standing together for five minutes at noon.
While students in the Berkley School District regularly participate in anti-bullying activities, Jessica Stilger, communications supervisor for the district, explained that the schools chose to participate in the Stand 4 Change Day to join a nationwide movement.
“Anderson Middle School students decided to stand together in a peace sign for their 'standing' moment,” Stilger said. “It was a student decision and organized activity. Students and staff wore their 'No Place for Hate' T-shirt, and pins that said things like ‘I am human’ and ‘I am strong.’”
It marked the first student rallying endeavor of its kind for the anti-bullying movement, and Anderson Middle School’s activity sent a statement loud and clear in its formation.
Teacher Noelle Sutherland helped organize the event with the students and Principal Vince Gigliotti reminded the students of the importance of solidarity.
"Remember why we are participating today,” he told them after the moment of silence in the human peace sign. “You are standing with millions of students nationwide to stand up to bullying. Let's continue to be a ‘No Place for Hate’ school."
For more information about Stand 4 Change Day, visit Stand4Change.org.