Proud of Prescott

This morning as I read the article on Ashlynn Conner (the 10 y/o girl from downstate Illinois who committed suicide allegedly as a result of bullying), my cell phone rings.  Ironically, it is someone from a local news radio station (at least I think that’s what he said; it was pre-coffee so who knows) responding to an email I sent out yesterday on a whim.  He tells me that there was another recent incident of the same sort in North Carolina.  Yesterday’s paper also talked of a teacher in a Christian suburban school masturbating in class.  As is often the case with most news stories whether in print or on cable, I wonder if there is anything worth listening to that won’t send us all into deep depression.  It seems hard to find.  When I realized that I was witnessing one right in front of me, I spontaneously decided to share it.  I have no experience in media and my attempt at creating a press release would probably make Marian and Christine hang their heads in shame.  But I thought the story was too good not to share and that people might welcome something positive out of all the usual negativity.

Local School’s Anti-Bullying Campaign

Students at Prescott Elementary School in west Lincoln Park have been leading an anti-bullying campaign this year in the face of tragic stories of suicide and trauma.  While news of a young victim of bullying from downstate Illinois reached the press yesterday, the upper grades at Prescott had started selling bracelets to their fellow students.  These bracelets had slogans that the students had come up with themselves including: “Don’t Be Mean Behind the Scene” and “Niceness Is Priceless” and “Being Cruel Isn’t Cool.”  The older students presented the bracelets and the message behind them to each of the classrooms.  Although a small school, the students had raised about $300 on the first day of selling.  The money will go towards 8th grade graduation and trip costs.  The message though, is indeed “priceless.”  Children here are learning the invaluable lesson of human decency, something as important if not more than the educational goals we set before them.
On the day that handout above came home, Ethan was already telling me all about it.  He knew which bracelets he wanted and that it would be a better deal to get 2 for $5 instead of 1 for $3.  There was no way I could get away with not purchasing on the very first day they were offered.  He even slept with them on last night.  Most importantly, the campaign has initiated discussions in our kitchen about bullying: what it is, what to do if targeted, what to do if witnessing or aware of it, etc.  Even before the bracelets were thought up, Ethan already knew that he didn’t like bullies.  He had put it on his Star Student poster months ago.  The Star Student of his class gets a week to display a poster all about them (their family, their 3 wishes, things they like, things they don’t like, etc.).  I was surprised to hear him say he wanted to put bullies on the things he didn’t like since I know I had never discussed that with him before.  But he had learned in school from his wonderful teacher.

Connor modeling his 2 bracelets

We send our children to Prescott, our neighborhood public school.  Sometimes I think that there are those around us who think by doing so we are borderline abusive.  Ok, not really, but you get my drift.  That could be a long, involved blog post in itself.  However, I just have to say that the teachers and staff at this little school are superb in many ways.  Yes, they teach academics but more than that they nurture the whole child.  They have been holistic from the beginning in such a way that I not only trust them with my precious boys but feel privileged to have them under their tutorage.  Even if my little press release never sees the light of day, it is still more than newsworthy in my eyes.  Props to Prescott!  🙂
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2 Responses to Proud of Prescott

  1. Caryn says:

    Leslie, your press release and blog entry is awesome! We do indeed have a very special school.

  2. Eric Marcus says:

    Love it! Wearing my blue “Niceness is Priceless” bracelet as I write. We do have a school we can be proud of.

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