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Peace Day at Jerry L. White: "Peace Starts with Me"

“Be kind, be nice and not violent,” said Kurt Jones, a senior at Jerry L. White Center. We asked Principal Fluker, staff and students why Peace Day is so important at their school. The gems we learned are so good we must share.

The morning announcement used to set the tone for the day is not reserved for Peace Day alone. This daily practice helps students, staff and teachers embody the theme of peace throughout the school year.

School social worker, Seth Mayhew took us through the steps of their daily practices.

“During the morning announcements which are done via Teams, we briefly talk about BIG emotions (anger, frustration, excitement). We talk about the importance of staying calm or returning to calm after something we don't like happens. Then we watch this video as a school and breathe together,” said Mayhew. This is done daily by the entire school.

Two teachers, Mrs. Czarnota (PBIS chair) and Ms. Nicols (PBIS co-chair) gathered a few students to further explain the importance of peace and shared how they are making Peace Day special. All week the school has practiced talking about peace, and practiced through art projects, discussions, and watching meaningful videos. Today the school will gather for a fun dance, to celebrate their unity around creating a peaceful setting every day, both individually and collectively.

Fatima, a senior, said she is looking forward to the dance, she appreciates being able to dance in a group setting while celebrating the day.

Davon, a sophomore, said he is excited about celebrating Peace Day. “I want to be respectful, responsible and safe,” he said. He shares a message for all DPSCD students, “We should all want the same thing, to be peaceful every day.”

Ms. Czarnota and Ms. Nicols reiterated the powerful messages shared by students that are modeled daily. They said the shared theme is, “Peace begins with me and begins with us all.”

This work at Jerry L. White is very intentional, and the common thread of peace is tightly woven throughout the entire building, with Principal Fluker leading the way. She offers a few tips we can all keep in our notebooks along with the morning video.

“Principals, just like anyone else, can find peace daily by implementing certain practices and strategies. I set boundaries; between work and personal life. Allocating dedicated time for relaxation, hobbies, and spending quality time with loved ones can contribute to overall peace of mind. With my demanding schedule, prioritizing self-care is crucial. Engaging in activities that bring joy and relaxation, such as exercise, reading, listening to music, or pursuing hobbies, can help maintain a sense of peace. Seeking support and connection; from building a supportive network of colleagues, mentors, or friends who understand the challenges principals face. Sharing experiences, seeking advice, or simply having someone to talk to can alleviate stress and foster a sense of peace. Finally, taking time each day to reflect on what I am grateful for,” said Principal Fluker.

Let’s celebrate Peace Day every day at DPSCD!