HAGERSTOWN, MD (November 21, 2006) – Three Washington County Public School middle schools participated in the national program, “Mix It Up,” last week, designed to challenge social boundaries, and to foster respect and understanding in schools and communities. Tuesday, November 14th was Mix It Up at Lunch Day, sponsored by the Southern Poverty Law Center’s Teaching Tolerance program, and based on the simple idea of students sitting with somebody new at lunch. Boonsboro, E. Russell Hicks, and Northern middle schools participated.
Boonsboro Middle added extra elements by beginning the week with a survey of all students, who were asked to express anonymously their feelings about how their school and their peers make them feel, and what suggestions they could make to bring about positive changes at their school. Later in the week a banner reading, “MIX IT UP! Bring down the walls that divide us,” was put up, and students were invited to sign it. Group discussions about the surveys and how to make positive changes were also held. A series of related lessons will be taught in each student’s Social Studies class, and school activities will be planned to support the program.