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Francis Howell students created program to stand up to bullies

8:16 AM, Oct 10, 2012   |    comments
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By Pat McGonigle

Cottleville (KSDK) - Students at Francis Howell Central High School are getting an A+ from some national experts on the subject of standing up to bullies.

The school was recently recognized with a commendation from the Character Education Partnership, based in Washington, D.C.

The program is called "Breakdown FHC", an idea that came from students after attending a bullying workshop led by Tina Meier. Meier's daughter, Megan, took her own life after she was bullied online by some peers.

The students at Francis Howell Central decided to set up special "concern" comment drop boxes in the hallways at the school and a virtual drop box on the school's website.

"We don't have a lot of bullying at our school," said Alex Wilson, a senior. "But there's always people being put down or left out of things."

The school's principal says it's an effective, anonymous way to stop trouble before it happens. Dr. Sonny Arnel says it's already been effective in preventing some students from harming themselves.

"I think we've had several instances where students are harming themselves," Arnel said. "This allowed us to help those students overcome those feelings. It's been a very helpful tool to help those students who are at their lowest moments."

The students were thrilled to hear they had received national recognition for their efforts.

"I was way excited," said Anna Killpack, a senior. "I did not think this would come of--I did not know that we get noticed on the state and national level---so it was cool to see that."


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