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Students challenged to be kind in all they do

Four Tulare County middle schools participate in Rachel's Challenge assemblies

Rachel's Challenge At school assemblies during October, Tom Isaacson spoke of the tragic 1999 Columbine High School shooting and the first victim – Rachel Scott. Cadets at La Sierra Military Academy (LSMA) were absolutely captivated; many were moved to tears. Mr. Isaacson is a member of the Rachel’s Challenge organization and a personal friend of Rachel’s brother Craig – a Columbine student who survived the shooting. Rachel’s Challenge was formed by members of the Scott family following the tragedy. The story of Rachel’s kind and compassionate acts, coupled with the contents of her six diaries, are the basis of the life-changing school program.

Rachel's Challenge Across the nation, the program challenges students to create on-going activities to reinforce Rachel’s message of spreading kindness. At La Sierra, the leadership class, under the direction of Mike Franco, unveiled a number of activities during Red Ribbon Week (October 24-29), including a Chain Reaction of Kindness. The paper chain contained links representing acts of kindness, a good choice or something positive someone had done at school. Soon, the Choices Program will train the LSMA leadership students to become Friday Night Live Mentors to others on campus. The mentors will reinforce Rachel’s Challenge on campus concerning issues such as bullying and “the power of words.”

In October, students at Cherry Avenue, Los Tules and Live Oak Middle Schools in Tulare also received visits from the Rachel’s Challenge organization. For information on bringing Rachel’s Challenge to your school, contact Adam Valencia, Choices program supervisor, at (559) 651-0155, ext. 3611.

Photos above:
~ Tom Isaacson speaks about the victims of the Columbine High School shooting to students at La Sierra Military Academy.
~ After the program, cadets sign “Rachel’s Challenge” – a pledge to promote kindness.