Schools across P.E.I. spend week promoting caring attitude

Jim Day
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Students marking Family Violence Prevention Week, which runs until Feb. 15

Phil Matusiewicz is executive director of the P.E.I. Family Violence Prevention Services. (file photo)

Teachers and students are likely enjoying a more peaceful, friendly environment in schools across P.E.I. this week.

Many schools are putting extra emphasis on students being nice during Family Violence Prevention Week, which runs Feb. 9 to 15.

Encouraging kind gestures is a popular initiative in a number of schools.

At Alberton Elementary School, teachers are giving Random Acts of Kindness cards when they observe students taking part in just such an act.

Alberton Elementary has seen many acts this week worthy of am RAK cards, as they are known.

There was the Grade 3 boy who offered to help a classmate clean his desk.

A Grade 5 girl quickly helped a special needs child pick up her large box of crayons that had spilled.

Without being asked, a kindergarten girl straightened out chairs at the end of the day.

Principal Shanna Perry says each day this week has a special theme. They include being nice to others, kindness and empathy, appreciation, making and keeping friends and being nice to one another, and caring for others around the world.

"What I have noticed is they are taking the messages very seriously,'' says Perry.

"They do really take the messages to heart.''

At Deblois French school, positive relationship messages are posted throughout the school.

Kindness Zones have been created for students at Summerside Intermediate School.

At Montague Regional High School, announcements are being made all week simulating circumstances of domestic abuse that provide information on where to go for help. The announcements are written and read by Students Against Violence Everywhere (SAVE) members.

Phil Matusiewicz, executive director of the P.E.I. Family Violence Prevention Services, applauds the SAVE programs that have taken off in high schools in the eastern part of the province.

"They certainly speak to the fact that youth are becoming much more engaged with the whole issue of intimate relationships and the respect that they need to have for one another in terms of relationships,'' he says.

Organizations: Alberton Elementary School, Summerside Intermediate School.At Montague Regional High School, P.E.I. Family Violence Prevention Services

Geographic location: P.E.I.

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