By Shelby Stewart
Brandon Twp.-Twenty students at Harvey Swanson Elementary school are working hard to help their fellow students.
This year, the students in the Fifth Grade Safety Team are tasked with holding doors, arrival monitoring and greeting, hall monitoring, classroom prep, peer mediating/conflict resolution and grounds beautification.
“Students have the opportunity to assume a leadership role that benefits their peers as well as the entire school community,” said Beth Mulligan, fifth grade teacher and Safety Squad Leader. “They take pride in their responsibilities as they gain valuable problem solving skills, build self-esteem, and contribute to something that affects others in such a helpful and positive way. This is Blackhawk pride.”
The goal of the team is to develop leaders who take pride in their school, and who want to do all they can to help the school be a safe, kind and happy place where students love to learn together.
“Having students take an active role in the decision making and actions that lead to making their school the best it can possibly be is incredibly empowering and exciting,” said Harvey Swanson Principal Debbie Brauher. “Being a member of the fifth grade Safety Team gives our students the opportunity to problem solve, make decisions and develop confidence. I’m so proud of them.”
Members of the safety team are excited to work with the younger students and be a role model in the school.
“I saw safeties helping little kids when I was younger and I thought that was so cool. I’ve always wanted to be a safety and be able to help kids,” said Macey Toutant. “I’m a good safety because I have integrity and I am on task. I always listen to what the teacher says and I do the right thing.”
Other members are happy to be involved in a school activity that spreads positivity and kindness.
“I want to be able to help people and be kind to others. I want to be able to show people how to be kind to others. I also want to be involved, a lot,” said Bryce Martin. “I am able to help people with their needs and when they are disrespectful or unkind to others, I am able to show them how to fix that.”
Some of the students also think about their younger siblings and how they are able to help them fix their problems.
“At my old school we had safeties. I was young and I saw a big safety helping a little kid and I thought, ‘Wow that’s cool. I want to do that.’ I want to be a safety because I’m involved with a lot of stuff so I like being involved,” said Owen Stone. “Mrs. Brauher tells me I’m an excellent problem solver. Also, I know what it’s like to work with little kids and I know how to help them fix their problems. I have a little brother in first grade.”
By Shelby Stewart