Every year, the administration, faculty and staff at Chatterton School reflect on the previous school year and challenge themselves to build upon its successes. With public displays of hate on the rise, it is more important than ever for schools to commit to programs that clearly define expectations in behavior for all members of the community.
Joined by its sister schools, Birch and Levy Lakeside, Chatterton is implementing an initiative to become a No Place for Hate school. No Place for Hate is “a self-directed program helping the stakeholders take the lead on improving and maintaining school climate so all students can thrive.” As a kickoff to the program, each student signed a No Place for Hate pledge in their classroom to treat people fairly, be kind to others even if they are not like them and tell a teacher if they see someone being hurt or bullied.
Throughout the year, members of the Chatterton school community will complete three activities in which students and teachers will discuss different topics, including respect, bullying and inclusion. Chatterton recently completed its first activity, The Tree of Respect. During this activity, every classroom read the book, “All Are Welcome,” and held a discussion about kindness vs. respect. Students also discussed the difference between the two and developed ways that they can show respect towards one another, both in and out of school. Following the discussions, they were given a hand made from construction paper to write one idea that shows respect to others.
Every student is committing to their idea. The paper hands are displayed together in the form of leaves on the school’s Tree of Respect as a constant reminder of the commitment made by everyone at Chatterton to respect one another.