Plainville Community Schools, 47 Robert Holcomb Way, Plainville CT 06062, (860)793-3200

Anti-Defamation League To Host CyberALLY Training For Middle School Students

The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) is continuing their work with students at the Middle School of Plainville, with an upcoming CyberALLY training session to be held on April 30. The full day workshop is being funded in part by a grant from the Elizabeth Norton Trust Fund as well as the Open Choice Academic and Social Support Grant to help further school climate and anti-bullying efforts.

The MSP Ally student group will participate in the interactive CyberALLY training workshop, which will provide practical information and skill building opportunities. The student group of approximately 30 students meets on a regular basis with Dean of Students Tom Laudadio; the group has also participated in the "From Bystander to Ally" training session provided by the Anti-Defamation League earlier this year. During weekly meetings, the student group discusses school related bullying issues and school climate. At the start of the school year, the entire Middle School student body participated in a school wide assembly provided by the Anti- Defamation League to address name-calling and bullying. As a follow up to the initial school wide session, students were invited to apply to participate in subsequent ADL training workshops and meet on a regular basis with Laudadio as part of the Student Ally group. As such 29 students were selected through the application process.

To support the anti-bullying and positive climate efforts throughout the middle school, students may also receive "MSP Ally" bracelets as part of the Positive Behavioral Interventions & Supports (PBIS) program. In addition, sixth and seventh grade students in Shannon Shea-Lyons' Health classes recently created anti-bullying posters in support of a positive middle school climate, and anti-bullying announcements are made on a daily basis to reinforce the positive school building culture. Laudadio is also working with middle schoolers Nick Costantini and Jarod Romankiw to create a video about challenging name calling and bullying behaviors, which will include interviews with middle school students and staff, and real conversations about bullying and name calling, and what the middle school is doing about these issues.

"As a school, we are united in challenging name-calling and bullying behaviors. The CyberALLY training will build students' skills for protecting themselves against bullying behaviors in on-line forums and take action against name-calling and bullying behaviors at the middle school, hence our MSP Ally student group. The CyberALLY training, our continued work with the ADL, and PBIS process supports and advances the positive school climate and culture we have developed here," said Laudadio.

"The Middle School of Plainville is a great place to learn, but we are always looking for ways to make it even greater. The Ally program helps appropriately empower our students to have more ownership of that effort," noted Middle School of Plainville Principal, Matthew Guarino.

-Posted on April 23, 2012 at 01:09 PM

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