Elementary schools launch anti-bullying program

Elementary schools launch anti-bullying program
Posted on 01/27/2020

The Hicksville School District kicked off the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program at the Board of Education meeting on Jan. 22. Olweus is a program designed for students that aims to reduce existing bullying problems, prevent the development of new issues and achieve better peer relations at school. All elementary schools in the district have adopted the Olweus program.

Student and staff members from Dutch Lane Elementary School were in attendance to speak on the school’s implementation of Olweus. Principal Janine Rossi described the Olweus professional development courses that were conducted with her staff. In addition to the staff’s courses, a survey was given to students in grade K-5 to gauge an understanding on how they feel during the school day.

After preparation was complete, the school planned a kickoff to coincide with the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. holiday. Keeping Dr. King’s philosophy in mind, Dutch Lane students chose the theme “Kindness Rocks” for the event.

On Jan. 17, the entire Dutch Lane community gathered in the auditorium wearing their school colors as a sign of unity. During the event, teachers acted out the book “Stick and Stone,” a story of unlikely friendship and mutual respect. “Our teachers made us laugh while teaching us a valuable lesson,” said Dutch Lane student Lucas Mane.

The students defined bullying as a group and laid out ground rules for how to implement the Olweus program at their school. The rules are: do not bully others, try to help students who are being bullied, include students who are being left out and tell an adult at school and/or home if they know of someone being bullied.

During the kickoff, students wrote down random acts of kindness they can do to make their school a better place. They then connected them to make one long chain of kindness that reached all around the auditorium. “It was a great way for all of us to see how kindness can quickly multiply to grow into something that is unstoppable,” said Dutch Lane student Gabrielle Hasse.

Dutch OLWEUS

Dutch OLWEUS

Dutch OLWEUS

Dutch OLWEUS

Dutch Lane student Shanjaay Naguleswaran handed out “I Pledge to be Kind” stickers donated by the Hicksville Congress of Teachers to board members. To conclude the presentation, Gabrielle, Lucas, Shanjaay and student Anthony Urena received special certificates of recognition for their part in the kickoff. The district thanks all Hicksville schools for their commitment to this important program and supports all anti-bullying initiatives.