FAIR HAVEN MARKS A WEEK OF RESPECT

FH week 2Laraine Gaunt holds up the letter “R” for respect while addressing Sickles School students, as Principal Cheryl Cuddihy looks on.

Press release from Fair Haven School District

During the week of october 5 through 9, Fair Haven schools marked a state-mandated “Week of Respect” with meaningful activities and new initiatives designed to encourage kindness and acceptance.

Sickles School welcomed Laraine Gaunt on Monday for an official kickoff of the new yearlong campaign, “It’s OK 2B Different.” Gaunt, an educator whose grown children had attended Sickles School, helped to create the program. She spoke to students in Pre-Kindergarten through third grade classes about the importance of respect.

“Treat others the way you want to be treated,” Gaunt told the students. “Be a buddy, not a bully, and you will soon learn everything it takes to be a good friend.”

“It’s OK 2B Different” is based on the premise that teaching young children respect for individuals (even the bully) will promote understanding and tolerance before bias, hate, and prejudice can occur. “The color of love is always the same in the eyes of a child …” is the philosophy behind the program, which received its official start at Sickles School in 1978, when it was written and introduced by the school’s administration, teachers, and parents.

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