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Middle Schoolers' Leadership Qualities Recognized

Students bring positive messages to pupils throughout the school district

Three groups of Hillsborough Middle School students were put in the spotlight at Monday’s school board meeting for their efforts in helping other students throughout the district.

The three groups–PRIDE (Peers Respecting Individual Differences Everyday), REBEL (Reaching Everyone by Exposing Lies) and SLC (Student Leadership Corps)–were recognized for their peer leadership.

“These students do a wonderful job,” Superintendent of Schools Jorden Schiff said.

“Their commitment to what they do shines every day,” Middle School Principal Joseph Trybulski told the school board. “They’re amazing role models.”

The members of REBEL, guidance counselor Anna Mahler said, go to all the fourth-grade classes in the school district with a message that promotes no tobacco use. REBEL members also suggest ways on how to handle peer pressure and how to hone their refusal skills.

The students also participate in the Great American Smokeout and Kick Butts Day, Mahler said.

Members of PRIDE promote a positive atmosphere at the school, Mahler said. Not only do they carry a message of tolerance to students at the middle school, they also visit all the district’s second-graders. For example, she said, PRIDE members conduct a “No Name-Calling Week” at the school.

To mark N.J. Schools Week of Respect from Oct. 1 to 5, PRIDE sponsored a writing contest on the topic, “What Respect Means to Me.” Students could write a poem, song lyric, a brief essay or a creative piece that combines words and images on the personal meaning of respect. All participants will receive a coupon for a free cookie in the cafeteria and the winner will earn a gift certificate from Fruity Yogurt.

The students in SLC focus on drug/alcohol education and prevention activities at the school, Trybulski said. The students, who have a two-year commitment to the program, visit all the health classes in the school with their substance abuse prevention message.

To help transmit their message, the SLC members play a specially-designed game of “Jeopardy” with their peers, the principal said.

In total, the members of all three groups come into contact with more than half of the students in the school district.

Nancy Edwards October 11, 2012 at 01:11 PM
The best way for students to learn these life messages are from their peers. Many compliments to Anna Mahler for her leadership qualities and unending dedication to our students and the families of Hillsborough. I've gotten to know Anna through the Municipal Alliance. I am always so impressed with her ability to allow students to creatively be involved and accomplish the goal. Hats off to Anna and the wonderful programs she has developed!
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