EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Merrimack Valley

October 2, 2012

Amesbury students pledge to not bully

AMESBURY — During an assemblyyesterday morning, Amesbury High Schoolstudents raised their arms in

unison, pledging to “be a buddy, not a bully” as they go forward in their high school careers.

The assembly marked the kickoff of the “Be a Buddy, Not a Bully” campaign, which will coincide with National Anti-Bullying Awareness Month and aims to raise awareness of the issue within the school system and the community. Similar assemblies will be held at other schools in the region throughout October.

Peter Hoyt of the School Committee served as master of ceremonies and began the proceedings by reminding the students of their responsibility in fostering a healthy schoo

l community.

“Every day when you come in, you have a choice to make about safety, about acceptance, about tolerance and peace in your school,” Hoyt said. “You also have an opportunity to recognize the power of your voice, people look to you to set an example.”

The “Be a Buddy, Not a Bully” initiative is a collaborative effort between local schools, police, publ

ic officials and businesses throughout the region. At each assembly, students will be asked to stand against bullying in their schools. , and they will be given a wristband to symbolize that pledge. Each wristband says “Be a Buddy, Not a Bully,” and will be colored according to each school’s colors.

The initiative was started by Rosemary Werner, director of Best Foot Forward in Amesbury, and has garnered support from numerous businesses throughout the area. Notably, Amesbury Chevrolet has set up a scholarship that will be awarded annually to a “hero” from each of Amesbury’s five schools. The dealership also donated the wristbands.

A total of nine communities will be participating in the initiative, including Amesbury, Newburyport, Portsmouth, N.H., and the communities comprising the Triton and Pentucket school districts.

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