Aikin Elementary, Justiss Elementary, and T. G. Givens Early Childhood Center participated in “Start with Hello” week with hundreds of schools and youth organizations across the United States. This program, founded by the Sandy Hook Promise, teaches students to be more socially inclusive and connected to each other. Students were taught the importance of inclusion of all students through presentations, guidance lessons, assemblies, special events, and campus-wide initiatives that reinforce the prevention of social isolation and loneliness.
They held all activities on the elementary campuses, with all students participating in daily activities like the campus-wide art display “We Rise By Lifting Others!” hot air balloon project and “Aikin Says Hello,” photo opportunities, “Wear Green, Don’t Be Mean!”, mix it up lunch and Friday assemblies. In addition, they gave students a chance to learn different types of handshakes and new conversation starters to help greet new friends.