East Allen County Schools top 10 in national Middle Schools Kindness Challenge

With bullying at a high in some places, East Allen County Schools are showing it's not so hard to be kind. They've been doing such a good job at it they're being nationally recognized.

Posted: Mar 5, 2019 8:23 PM
Updated: Mar 6, 2019 8:36 AM

NEW HAVEN, Ind. (WFFT) - New Haven Middle School and Southwick Elementary in East Allen County were announced as national finalists of the Middle School Kindness Challenge.

The schools are working toward a bully free environment having much success. The schools were given $1,000 each for their efforts.

"It was a kindness challenge for middle schools, but they allowed elementary schools to participate in it, and for us to be a finalist is just amazing," Diamond Robinson principal of Southwick Elementary School said.

"We teach lessons daily during our success time. it's a time students learn about kindness. We gave them a challenge each day going out meeting five new people, learning how to introduce yourself, and then saying kind things on social media. Whatever it may be. We had a number of different activities," Chad Houser principal of New Haven Middle School said.

Going above and beyond like that made them stand out to Daniel O'Donnell who is the director of the Middle School Kindness Challenge.

The contest had over 2,300 schools register within the last school year from all fifty states.

"What stood out to me about New Haven and Southwick is it really seemed like their school culture was transformed by participating in the kindness challenge, so you really felt that in talking to the principal and talking to the students that it really took on a life of its own, and it flipped the script. All of a sudden it was cool to be kind," Daniel O’Donnell director of the Middle School Kindness Challenge said.

East Allen County is the first district to have 100% participation of all schools.

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