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Day of Understanding

Consolidated High School District 230 puts its strategic Framework to work each and every day. One of the goals is to enhance enrichment and leadership opportunities to reach all student populations. Victor J. Andrew High School’s recent Day of Understanding epitomizes the goal as it was an exercise by students for students.


Andrew T-Bolts took part in a Day of Understanding to address respect and responsibility and ways to make the school an even better place. The activities for the extended 80-minute Advisory were created, delivered, and facilitated by students for under and upperclassmen alike. The goal, much like the district’s Strategic Framework Goal 6, is to enhance cultural responsiveness by educating students about microaggressions, the importance of words, and how to contribute to the school’s climate and culture.

Students watched a series of videos and discussed microaggressions, respect, and responsibility. Students highlighted what microaggressions are and the impact they can have. Respect centered on the importance of not judging but rather understanding, while responsibility focused on how words and actions can cause more harm than good, especially when social media isn’t used appropriately.

 

There were break-out sessions where small groups discussed ways to stop the drama, stop making judgments without knowing the full story, and discussions about what could be done to make VJA a better place.

According to senior Marisa Lynch, the Day of Understanding stemmed from the Restorative Circles Club as members were trying to find ways to instill preventive measures, so students could better understand their frustrations and solve issues. She said, “The day is necessary because it shows students leading by example. If your peers are more likely to participate in a civil manner, then you are likely to as well. A Day of Understanding is the projection of this idea on a larger scale.”