A local middle school is doing more than just the minimum requirements to prevent bullying – with the goal that the message sticks for good.
North Union Middle School was recently awarded the rating of excellence with distinction for academics, but for the last nine weeks, the 8th-grade students have been in a focused anti-bullying program that included the NBC4 Battle Against Bullying presentation.
"I had no idea it was that bad -- the number of suicides from bullying -- I had always just known bullying verbally or physically," said Kelsei Schwartzengraber, a student.
The students have shown creativity and energy on their own to change the culture.
"I've been bullied and want to help take a stand," said Aaliyha Miller, a student.
Aaliyha and three friends staged an unannounced bullying event in classrooms and the cafeteria to illustrate the difference between bystanders and upstanders.
There was a poster competition, a massive pledge board, and contest of anti-bullying student-produced video public service announcements.
Every student and staff member received an anti-bullying T-shirt designed by a student, and a locker magnet for each student – all with the goal that the anti-bullying message will stick, and North Union Local Schools will be an oasis where students can reach for the stars.
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