High school students discuss diversity, discrimination with sixth graders
Oct. 13, 2011
For the sixth grade at the Watervliet
Elementary School Thursday, Oct. 13 was not a day for
the teachers to teach. Instead, several Watervliet High School
students took over sharing with the sixth graders the experiences they
had growing up.
About 30 students from the high school Thursday spent the day at Watervliet Elementary discussing strategies to deal with racism and prejudiced attitudes as part of the district’s annual National Coalition Institute training. Organized by High School Assistant Principal David Wareing, the high school students led sixth graders through a variety of exercises designed to help the students understand the differences and similarities that exist among them and what to do when faced with discrimination and bullying. The day started off with a panel discussion featuring six high school students who shared personal stories and answered frank questions about bullying, peer pressure and what high school life is like.
At the end of the day students created a personal code of conduct for how to relate to other people. The high school students collected the codes of conduct and will hand them back and discuss them again when the students go through part two of the National Coalition Institute training next year. The students will participate in a similar set of exercises when they are at the junior high school as seventh graders.
Student members of the high school Character Education Executive Committee selected the student presenters and facilitators from all over the high school.
High school students participating Thursday were Tyler McLeod, Jose Sanchez, Antoine Johnson, Aneesa Johnson, Kayla Ray, Samantha Fandl, Alysa Chartrand, Pat Ebenhoch, Ryan Donlon, Chelsie Clickner, Nick Brown, Tom Szczepanski, Rachel Meyer, Amanda Bennett, Katelyn Murray, Arionna Dockstader, Kelly Veshia, Schyler Belonga, Kristina Falzo, Kaylee Maldanado, Peta Evans, Brittanie Clickner, Ailayia Demand, Griffin Kelly, Josh Veshia, Brandon Legault, Anthony Mosca, Jon Moody, Pat Reinfurt, Taylor Dockstader, Logan Miller, Kornelia Sziller, Julia Anderson, McKayla DeGuire, Jonathan Irizarry and Branasia Bell.