Leonia High School Pledges to Stop Bullying on #Day1

Leonia High School’s faculty, staff, and students understand the severity of bullying and its consequences. According to senior, Alexis Kim, “It’s important to stop bullying on #Day1 before it leads to larger, more serious issues. Then it cannot develop and become a danger to others.” Junior Isabelle Raskin agreed, saying bullying awareness “prevents bullies from thinking it’s okay before it gets out of hand.”

Leonia High School’s Anti-Bullying coordinator, Marlana LaPera, commented that “The Upstander Pledge is a way for our students to take a stand against bullying. It is our hope that students will take responsibility for their actions and encourage others to do the same. We want to encourage students to take actions when they see bullying occur. These steps can be to stop it, report it, or even reach out to some who they know has been bullied. We want our students to have the tools to recognize bullying when it occurs and to take the correct actions in becoming in upstander in their environment.”

As a result, in efforts first begun by the Tyler Clementi Foundation—whose mission is to end online and offline bullying in schools, workplaces and faith communities—members of the school community have pledged to stop bullying on #Day1, working together to educate people on how bullying harms us all. Junior, Benjamin Asciutto’s goal after pledging is to” make everyone feel happy and have strong self-esteem.”

Many students, faculty, and staff have taken the Upstander Pledge, joining thousands of people across the nation who are firmly committed to actively stand against bullying wherever it may be, showing that we can stand up to bullying by expressing how our unique differences and identities make this world a better place. “Everyone should feel welcome and not be afraid to come in every day,” Catalina Castellon, Leonia High School senior, states after pledging. The Tyler Clementi Foundation is an organization created by the Clementi family which seeks to prevent bullying through inclusion, assertion of dignity and acceptance as a way to honor the memory of Tyler Clementi [of Ridgewood, NJ]: a son, a brother and a friend.

In 2010, Tyler’s death became a global news story, highlighting the impact and consequences of bullying while sparking dialogue amongst parents, teachers, and students across the country. The story also linked to broader issues impacting youth and families such as LGBT inequality, safety in schools, youth in crisis, higher education support systems, and cyberbullying.

Bullying can happen anywhere, and today’s youth are especially at risk.

Bullying: Fast Facts

28% of U.S. students in grades 6–12 have experienced bullying.
20% of U.S. students in grades 9–12 have experienced bullying.
9% of students in grades 6–12 experienced cyberbullying.
15% of high school students (grades 9–12) were electronically bullied in the past year.
55.2% of LGBT students experienced cyberbullying.
30% of young people admit to bullying others in surveys.
70.6% of young people say they have seen bullying in their schools.
70.4% of school staff have seen bullying.
62% witnessed bullying two or more times in the last month and 41% witness bullying once a week or more.

You too can take the #Day1 Pledge and become an #Upstander in your community: https://tylerclementi.org/pledge/


L.A.S. - 9th Grade Field Trip

The Leonia Science Academy (freshman class) visited the Meadowlands Environment Center on October 10th. Mrs. Smyth and Miss Shutovsky chaperoned the trip. The class examined many aspects concerning the ecology of an estuary. Chemical field tests were performed and the class took part in a “Fish Murder Mystery”. In this challenging program the students were charged with solving an environmental scenario. The students combined water testing, current events, and map resources to gather and present evidence to support a hypothesis for what caused a massive fish kill.

Dear Parents and Guardians:
Welcome to the 2017-2018 school year. 
I hope that summer gave you and your family time to relax, reconnect, and spend quality family time. 
Here in the district, the administrative team, the supporting staff, the custodians, and the maintenance personnel have worked to prepare the schools for your child’s return.  Thanks to the municipality and a grant, you will find some new sidewalks around ACS.  Classrooms in ACS, LMS and LHS have been spruced up with some newly painted rooms, and rooms with replaced, attractive, and durable flooring.  At LHS, construction on the new addition began in late June and we will be watching the steel frame the building in the next few weeks.  The goal is for enclosure for interior work before the cold weather sets in.  When the project is completed by June 2018, there will be 8 new classrooms, small-group instructional spaces, and a state-of-the-art Culinary Lab.  Next summer, interior work will be completed on a larger cafeteria, new student services rooms and barrier-free access to the Little Theater. 
We continue our goal of Chromebook carts in every classroom with the addition of 15 new Chromebook carts district-wide.  In addition, your child will find more technology (SmartBoards, Hovercams, laptops) than ever in classrooms.
The 2017-2018 school year in Leonia begins with excitement, preparation, eagerness and anticipation.  It is an opportunity for transformation and growth for students and staff alike.
As we begin this new year, let us pause for a moment to think about our family and friends, colleagues and students struggling in the Houston and Galveston, Texas areas as well as those in Louisiana and the Gulf Coast affected by Hurricane Harvey.  Our thoughts are with them as they open their new school year.
Please visit our schools and participate in school events.   Be sure to check the district calendar for these events or visit the three Home & School websites for the latest.
Best wishes for a successful school year,
Joanne Megargee
Leonia Public Schools