Making this a bully-free zone

In an effort to call attention to bullying, senior Amanda Buchanan, lead anti-bullying week for DECA (Distributive Education Clubs of America), along with business teacher Jennifer DeClerck.

Photo by Kat Jayne from Pexels

Many people think of bullying as something that happens in high school. But the truth is that bullying can happen anywhere at any age. It not only happens in school, but also in the workplace and with friends.

“To make people aware of bullying in today’s society, Amanda and Samantha Hirmiz decided to create an anti-bullying campaign as a DECA Public Relations project.” DeClerck said. “The students did a fantastic job putting together the campaign as well an executing it.”

Although Buchanan will be graduating this year, bullying won’t stop forever just because of one person.

“It would be a nice campaign to have annually because of new students coming in. We want to show them that the school supports them and this remains an anti-bullying zone,” DeClerck said.

In their effort to prevent bullying, Buchanan and DeClerck organized some events to happen in school.

The first event was the showing of a movie called “Cyberbully” December 23. This movie was about high school students, and it showed how the words of others can affect someone drastically. This film can make students think about the consequences of the things they say before they choose to harm others.

The second event organized by Buchanan was putting sticky notes on every locker in the school. This happened January 5, the day the school returned from break. The notes had sayings like “Stay fighting” and “Better things are coming.” This showed students that someone cares about them and believes that they can overcome their bad feelings.

Another organized event was when teachers put a dot of color on each student’s hand. When the students went to their lunches, there was colored paper on each table. There was also a list of topics to talk about. Students were supposed to sit, organized by the color on their hands, and meet new people. This helped students gain the confidence to reach out and make new friends.

January 9, students from several classes organized in the gym. Students stood in formation to spell out the word “stop”, and there was a row of students below the word, holding up a sign that said “bullying.” Getting students involved in a project like this can make them open their eyes to what’s going on because they can see how many students can be affected by bullying.

Buchanan’s campaign was put together as a project for DECA. She had to compose a 30-page paper and create a presentation, which will be delivered at the state competition in early March, and continuing on to the national competition in April if she wins.

Her efforts to prevent bullying continue to be noticeable. As the posters around school say, “This is a bully-free zone."

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