Brookville elementary students walk to school to lead charge against bullying

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JEFFERSON COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) – Wednesday is National Walk to School Day. Thousands of students, staff, and community members across the country come together to walk as one to school to promote physical activity and safety in communities across America. Members from the Brookville Area School District participated in the annual event, where they also use the day to spread their message against bullying.

Not only did students from the Hickory Grove Elementary School walk to school today to promote physical activity and safety for Walk to School Day, but the school also uses this day to raise awareness of its bully-free campaign across the district.

“I think that these kinds of messages remind kids for the day, and hopefully it carries on for longer than the day,” said Kristen Drake, a counselor at the elementary school.

More than 100 elementary students walked to school Wednesday, and they wore orange to show unity against bullying, as well as show support to any students in need.

“It just promotes that message and activities that kids feel safe in our school and they know what to do when they see bullying, they can report it, they can feel like they have trusted adults they can come to,” Drake said.

Current seniors were some of the first to participate in the event seven years ago. They are now the very leaders of anti-bullying campaigns and get to guide the current 3-6 graders.

“It brings back the memories of when we were younger too and did it and signed the posters and how cool we thought it was. And it’s a really good group activity to bring us all together” said Emma Zimmerman, a senior at Brookville Area High School.

Upon arrival, students signed a pledge against bullying, which will hang in the hallways for the school year and serve as a constant reminder of their pledge to step forward.

“We see bullying in our schools and it’s stuff that we can all take steps to help get rid of it,” said Calvin Doolittle, a senior at Brookville Area High School. “Everyone can be kind. It doesn’t matter who you are. It doesn’t have to be something big, but just try to be kind every day.”

As the event has grown within the district over the years, more campaigns to fight against bullying game come to be. Including Wellness Wednesday. Which kicks off the week after the Walk to School Day. So, starting next Wednesday, and every Wednesday for the rest of the year, those within the district will meet at the high school track 30 minutes before school starts to continue to promote wellness and unity.

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