A Day of Appreciation

Ben Winston, Business Manager

On Friday, April 14, Ward Melville High School students participated in its annual Patriot PRIDE  Day (peace, respect, integrity, dependability, encouragement). The fate of the day was threatened by inclement weather the night before. The district seriously considered cancelling school. However, a late arrival sufficed and students were able to still attend presentations and workshops. Ward Melville is amongst numerous schools throughout the nation to participate in PRIDE Day. PRIDE Day is important as it emphasizes equality and acceptance.

Both Ward Melville clubs and community organizations participated in the appreciation day. Seminars ranged from drum circles to lectures on substance abuse. Through the variety of workshops, students were exposed to methods for dealing with intolerance. In the workshop concerning intolerance, students discussed examples of discrimination in small groups. They discussed how to change injustice into kindness and applied these concepts to our school. Another seminar presented a new method to follow when confronting a bully. In the past, it was always advised to confront the bully and directly tell him to stop. The new procedure encourages students to instead “rescue” the victim from the assault. These workshops as well as other ones emphasized a sense of unity.

In addition to workshops, many clubs and organizations had booths in the hallway. The booth for Key Club enabled students to imprint their hands on the cafeteria wall after pledging to take a stance against bullying. Organizations encouraged students to take action and improve the community. The Stony Brook Friendship Circle, a community organization, emphasized the impact of forming a friendship with an autistic child and tried to increase participation in the program.

Overall, Patriot PRIDE Day was an enjoyable and successful experience. With events planned by a diverse committee, participants were exposed to a range of issues. Junior Sapna Nath expressed her appreciation of PRIDE Day. She exclaimed, “Hearing about different life experiences provided a different learning dynamic allowing students to get involved and fostered greater school camaraderie.” Hopefully, the programs on Patriot Pride Day will inspire students to carry these ideas back to the community