Mar 15, 2022 - News

Johnston school district launches "Be Kind" campaign

Johnston High School commencement

Lydia Thomasee, 17, (center) helps Ashley McGovern, 18, with her mortarboard May 28, 2019, before the Johnston High School commencement at Drake University. Photo: Scott Morgan/For the Register

The news is pretty deflating sometimes. But here's a little reminder that in real life, people are mostly nice.

Driving the news: Johnston schools is undergoing a 12-week "Be Kind Campaign," after noticing divisiveness in the community.

  • Some of the district's schools have had to dedicate Monday mornings to deal with social media drama that happened over the weekend.
  • And even the district's own school board meetings have put some on edge.

What they're doing: From TikToks to handwritten notes, students and staff are putting out messages of kindness for the next three months.

  • When students return from spring break, clothespins with their messages of kindness will be passed out to clip to their backpacks.

Will it work? Back in 2014, a Harvard researcher shared with the Washington Post five ways to raise empathetic kids, including expanding your child's circle of concern and making caring for others a priority.

The bottom line: Sometimes, it's the little reminders that make a difference.


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