By Kristin Rover
Anti-bullying chants and cheers could be heard loud and clear from the Williamsburg High School gymnasium Oct. 31.
The activity was part of the Teens Against Bullying program that encourages middle and high school students to stand up against bullying.
Amy Schaljo, the health and physical education teacher at Williamsburg, along with Amber Malott, YWCA Prevention Education Program coordinator, planned several activities for children to participate in during October, which was Bullying Prevention Month.
“This program takes high school students as its leaders and puts them into the classroom of the sixth and seventh graders on a weekly basis to conduct lessons and activities regarding bullying,” Mallot said.
The anti-bullying chant activity involved having different groups create a chant or cheer with an anti-bullying message. Judges, including district officials and teachers, selected the winning chant that will be used across the district.
The “Blue team” won the contest with their chant: “Bullying is not in style, if you don’t bully it will make kids smile. Bullying is not OK so be careful what you say.”
Students in the winning group said it was fun to work together on the project.
“What made it fun was that the kids got really involved,” Isaac Gilbert, a sophomore team leader, said.
Samantha Maupin, a senior team leader, said she thinks the TAB program is helpful for middle school students.
“I think it is important so they are aware of issues like this that come up and they are aware that there is a resolution,” Maupin said.
Malott said this is the sixth year the district has been implementing the program.
“It has been extremely successful in drawing attention to methods of reporting bullying as well as creating a welcoming and inclusive environment for all of the students at the middle and high school in Williamsburg,” Mallot said.