Zone 33 Rotary Peace Symposium Includes Anti-Bullying Message from Beaufort High Students

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Apr 142013
 

Beaufort High students’ anti-bullying show invited to Rotary Zone meeting

BHS StudentsA troupe of drama students from Beaufort High School is attracting growing numbers of fans who support the group’s anti-bullying show, and local Rotarians think so much of the students’ work that they bankrolled a trip to a regional Rotary conference in North Carolina.

“If You See Something, Say Something,” is a collection of dramatic sketches aimed at getting students to intervene or contact responsible adults when they witness their fellow students being bullied.

“It’s a very positive message delivered in a very powerful way,” said Bill Evans, chairman of the Beaufort County School Board and a member of the Rotary Club of the Lowcountry.  “And it’s exciting to see the production’s creativity and energy gaining a wider audience.”

The Zone 33 Rotary Peace Symposium April 5 in Chapel Hill, N.C. attracted Rotarians from South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, Tennessee, Delaware, Maryland and the District of Columbia.  The Beaufort High group performed last month at an Eastern South Carolina Rotary conference in Myrtle Beach, where the students also participated in a question-and-answer session and discussed ways in which the show might serve as a model for statewide Rotary programs.

Seven Rotary clubs in Beaufort County – Hilton Head, Van Landingham, Sunset, Bluffton, Beaufort, Sea Island and Lowcountry – contributed to defraying the drama students’ traveling expenses to Chapel Hill, and the school district is covering their transportation costs.

Beaufort High Drama Director LaRaine Fess and her students performed their show to sixth-graders across Beaufort County earlier this year.  Rotary Club of the Lowcountry members distributed anti-bullying activity books and bookmarkers to students as they left the assemblies, and both contained the school district’s toll-free anti-bullying hotline numbers (843-322-2435 or 866-611-1102) and e-mail address (bcsdbullyinghotline@beaufort.k12.sc.us).

“Rotary’s partnership with this performance – and the club’s broader partnership with the school district to help prevent bullying – is what schools and communities should be all about,” said Chief Student Services Officer Gregory McCord.  “We continue to receive messages from middle-schoolers throughout the district who talk about how the show has helped to change their attitudes and perceptions, either as an active participant in bullying or as an observer.

“At the end of the day, we have students and the community fully engaged in support of a unified message”, McCord added.

 

Rotary Club of The Lowcountry Champions Anti-Bullying Campaign

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Jan 192013
 

November 19th and 20th, Rotary Club of the Lowcountry targeted 6th graders of Beaufort County where many tell-tell signs start manifesting themselves in regards to bullying.  Bullying is unwanted, aggressive behavior that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. The behavior is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated, over time. Bullying includes actions such as making threats, spreading rumors, attacking someone physically or verbally, and excluding someone from a group on purpose.  Bullying brings fear and hopelessness into the life of an innocent person. Such action can mean misery for those who are subjected to bullying on a regular basis. These individuals are three times more likely to consider suicide than their peers.  The booklets distributed will hopefully give guidance to someone being bullied and help others realize what they are doing is wrong.

Beaufort High Theatre Group

Cast of the Beaufort High Theatre Group and Beaufort County District personnel.

 

Rotary Club of the Lowcountry partnered with Beaufort Country School District who worked with Beaufort High’sPerforming Arts Theatre Group to put on an assembly that every 6th grader in Beaufort County was invited to attend.  Beaufort Middle, Lady’s Island Middle Robert Small’s Middle and Whale Branch Middle Schools all attend presentations at Beaufort High’s Performing Arts Center.  The Theatre Group put on thought provoking skits and involved the students and the teachers. Beaufort High’s Theatre Group and Rotary Club of the Lowcountry then traveled to Bluffton Middle and Hilton Head Island Middle to put on the same presentation.  The teachers were in attendance at the assembly as well since they are seeing some of these bullying behaviors taking place but unaware of the really harm being caused and may be turning a blind eye to the situation. The program was designed for the teachers to take action, let the victim know they don’t have to tolerate being treated this way, encourage bystanders who see something to say something and to let the bully’s know that this sort of behavior is not to be tolerated.

Rotary Club of the Lowcountry distributed anti-bullying activity books and bookmarks to each student as they exited the assembly.  The school district also had the Rotarians distribute arm bands that had an anti-bullying message and telephone number listed in case they wanted to speak with someone outside their school.

 

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