Respect week is here


Students participate in Week of Respect to unite against bullying.

Emma Makin and Alexandra Kinsey

“Treat others the way you want to be treated,” the golden rule says. As students and as people we learn this rule as the number one rule to carry with us in everything we do.

The week of respect is hindering down on the golden rule and really focuses on. 

Starting Monday, October 4, there were blue footprints taped to the floor that students of CHS were asked to stomp on, reiterating the chosen theme of “stomping out bullying.”

CHS students were prompted to match different themes with an array of different colors and outfits for the duration of the week. The outfits and colors represented different ideas associated with respect. 

Initiated by New Jersey’s Anti-Bullying Bill of Rights Act, the Week of Respect starts the first Monday of every October to prevent bullying in and out of school. 

CHS guidance counselors Sandra Gidos and Melanie Sambataro, along with a committee of students, organized all of the events and themes that students participated in during the Week of Respect. 

“It is important to recognize the Week of Respect, as kindness and respect should always be championed,” said Melanie Sambataro, school counselor for CHS. 

To initiate the Week of Respect, students signed a “No-Hate Pledge” on colorful index cards that were displayed on the cafeteria bulletin board designed by the student committee that was formed this year. 

Sambataro added, “I felt like we had a good amount of involvement this year and I think that is mainly due to the student committee that was formed this year and helped out with everything.”

The daily themes began with wearing blue, and continued into donning something with tie dye, a students favorite things, mismatch, and CHS merchandise. The message behind each day ranged from symbolizing differences and uniqueness to the unity of the school community. 

Graphic arts teacher Shelley Ortner had her students design interactive posters throughout the week. Ortner emphasizes empathy in design in her lessons, explaining that it is necessary for designers to keep in mind. 

 “My Illustration and Design class was tasked with designing posters with an interactive element focusing on respect,” Ortner said.  “Students conducted surveys and designed installations where the school community could touch, turn, open, participate, and immerse themselves in.” 

The posters, including a poster with little boxes that had emotions labeled where you could write down what you were feeling and drop it in a box and a stress relief poster with bubble wrap and sayings.   were centered around students and teachers being able to express themselves quickly. This project helped Ortner’s students delve deeper into the Week of Respect by researching more and learning how everyone responded to the projects. Ortner hoped the week of respect would  change her student’s focus from themselves to what others need. 

“We observed a high degree of participation and determined the effort was very successful,” Ortner said.

James Gleason, principal of CHS said, “I think that when we’re all working together and utilizing the same language and message it’s a good reminder for everyone to be respectful in the environment. We practice it all year but having a week to remind people and teach lessons about respect.”

“I think it went really well. While I think our school generally does a very good job with celebrating our differences, it is always a good reminder to keep that attitude going,” Sambataro concluded.