Holy Rosary students learn about anti-bullying program

June 27th, 2015 1:25 am

First Posted: 2/26/2013

Members of the Holy Cross basketball team, under the direction of Coach Al Callejas and Mrs. Tracy Bannon, Diocesan School Advancement Coordinator, have been part of an innovative new program held throughout the Diocese of Scranton feeder schools.

The Diocese has taken a positive spin where it is encouraging and rewarding random acts of kindness. It is “pro-good behavior” program rather than just “anti-bad behavior.”

Holy Cross High School instituted the Olweus Bully Prevention Program for the 2012-2013 academic year after seeing the effects of local acts of bullying that ended tragically. The system is now being introduced to feeder parishes in the district to deliver the message to younger students.

Holy Cross basketball team members Connor Callejas, Casey Gaughan, Josh Kosin, Kerry Kearney, Kyler Kovaleski and Corey Joyce spoke to students at Holy Rosary School about the pressures facing young people today and the importance of using what they have learned in Catholic School and from their parents to make good decisions, to act respectfully and to treat people as they would want to be treated.

Holy Cross junior Connor Callejas recounted how his mom always told him, “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say it at all.” He continued, “These are words to live by. If you can’t walk up to someone and say something to their face, don’t ever put it on social media outlets for other people to view.” S

enior Corey Joyce added, “You can never erase anything that you put on the computer. What you say about someone on the computer will follow them the rest of their lives. No matter how much you apologize, you can never take it back.”

At the conclusion of the program, the JUST DO MORE Kindness campaign was introduced.

Students in the Diocese of Scranton Catholic Elementary Schools “caught” doing random acts of kindness by the principal, teachers, administration and staff may earn a yellow rubber bracelet with the words “JUST DO MORE” inscribed.

Twice per month, an exceptional act of kindness is rewarded with a JUST DO MORE T-shirt. The student who wins the t-shirt also wins ice cream in the cafeteria for his or her classmates.

After an educational and entertaining session with each grade where the multi-faceted program was explained, a Just Do More Pledge was signed by both the basketball team players present and the students from each Holy Rosary class taking part in the program.