The Expect Respect Workshop is a 3-hour initial meeting designed to generate conversation and brainstorming around issues of school climate (Asset #5). Students talk about what they see and hear at school and brainstorm ways to make all kids feel safer and more cared for at school (Asset #8- Youth as Resources, #15-Positive Peer Influence, #10-Safety, #33- Interpersonal Competence).
In partnership with our ongoing Project Cornerstone efforts, Old Orchard School hosted two Expect Respect student workshops in October 2010 in which all students grades 4-8 participated. These school-site workshops addressed student relationships and positive school climate (Asset #5). In these 3-hour meetings, students generated conversation and brainstorming around issues of school climate (bullying). Students talked about what they see and hear at school and brainstormed ways to make all kids feel safer and more cared for at school. Our job as adults was to “listen and learn.”At the workshop, the kids identified action plans to implement as a group over the school year. Staff facilitators participated in the workshop, and followed up with the kids on an ongoing basis to assure that the action plans are implemented. Students left with a common understanding of bullying, harassing and discriminatory behavior and how these behaviors impact student success, and should now be able to identify negative behaviors they would like to reduce on campus and the positive behaviors they would like to increase. Ultimately, we can expect that “respect” will be more widespread. Expect Respect workshop is now an annual event in which all of our grade 4 and grade 5 students participate.