The Jackson-Via Elementary School "Bully-Nots" took to the stage in Charlottesville Thursday.
The group, made up of fourth and fifth grade students, is serious about putting an end to bullying in school. They use singing, dancing and skits to promote a respectful and caring school environment.
"They've given up recess and lunch for weeks to prepare for this show," said Jackson-Via School Counselor Kristin Ullrich. "A lot of what you see is their ideas. This is coming from them."
For the past three years, the Bully-Nots have been performing at school assemblies to help share their message.
"Kids who are getting bullied can feel like no one's going to help them if they're being bullied, or they don't have someone to talk to," said 4th-grade Bully-Not Member Anna Bon-Harper. "It's good for them to know that there's someone they can talk to."
When it comes to bullying, the students encourage their peers to be "upstanders" instead of bystanders.
"We do see some bullying, but I think for the most part, kids want to be friends and they want to get along," said Ullrich. "They do care about others. This is just a way to create a school climate where kids want to stick up for their friends, they want to prevent bullying."
The Bully-Nots plan to take their show to other schools in Charlottesville. Even when they're not performing, the kids continue to share their message through artwork and school announcements.
A series of town hall-style meetings for Charlottesville's neighborhoods will continue on May 23 with a meeting for residents of the Martha Jefferson and Little High neighborhoods.Full Story