“No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.” -Aesop We have been spending lots of time learning about kindness. Specifically, what it means to be kind to others, what it looks like, and how it can make our school a better place. To encourage the students to work hard to be kind to others, we have come up with a school-wide Kindness Project. The Kindness Project is being done at all three elementary schools. Every time a student performs an act of kindness, whether for an adult or another student, they will be given a link to add to a classroom chain. The chains will be hung up in the students’ classrooms. Once the class reaches a certain amount of chain links, they will be rewarded. The rewards will be different for all levels, but range from participating in hands on activities, to listening to music during their lunch break. Learning happens best when it is done both at school and at home. Here are a couple of helpful ways to continue teaching your child about the importance of kindness. READ ABOUT IT! Kindness is Cooler, Mrs. Ruler by Margery Cuyler Have You Filled a Bucket Today? by Carol McCloud PRACTICE IT! Spend time writing positive and encouraging notes to people in the community. This could be a neighbor, teacher, nursing home resident, or anyone! Encourage your children to hand deliver the note. TALK ABOUT IT! Parents can have an open conversation with their children to encourage them to be kind. Possible questions: Tell me about a time another student was kind to you. How did it make you feel? What do you think kindness means? Why is it important? Who is someone at your school you can be kind to today? What are ways you can be kind at home? “Unexpected kindness is the most powerful, least costly, and most underrated agent of human change.” --Bob Kerrey DeAndra Mahrt & Kari Kopperud Elementary School Counselors Do you know when to stop for a school bus? Do you know the legal consequences for passing a school bus? These questions are being asked due to the alarming amount of stop sign viola- tions we witness in our community. This school year in Le Mars alone, 19 people have received violations for running school bus stop signs. Our school busses have had more than 30 additional bus stop sign violations, but were unable to iden- tify these vehicles. A child's life is at risk every time someone runs a school bus stop sign. These children assume the school bus is a safe place for them to enter and exit. They know cars are supposed to stop. However, children take this for granted and may not be alertly looking for cars before they cross the street when getting on and off the bus. Disaster strikes when you combine drivers who get distracted, drivers who are too impatient to wait for a school bus, and children who expect all drivers to stop for the bus and for them. Alarmingly, within 3 days in October, disaster struck 5 times in 4 different states. Those disasters resulted in 5 children fatali- ties, 3 children with critical injuries, 4 children with minor inju- ries, 2 adults with minor injuries, and 3 adults going to jail for running a school bus stop sign. We are asking for your help to prevent a tragedy like this from occurring in our community. If your students ride the bus, please talk to them about making sure they look for cars when crossing the street and boarding/exiting the school bus. We are asking everyone to put down the phone, be patient, pay attention, and be extra cautious around school busses. Parents, please speak with your teenage drivers, as well. Due to this serious issue, the Le Mars Community School Dis- trict is beginning to equip busses with exterior cameras to iden- tify and prosecute violators. PLEASE keep our children safe. ● $250.00 to $675.00 dollar fine ● The court could order imprisonment not to exceed 30 days ● The Iowa DOT will implement a 30-day loss of driving privileges ● (You will also be required to acquire SR22 Insurance when driving privileges are reinstated) For more information, go to https://iowadot.gov/schoolbus/iowa-school-bus-safety-home PLEASE keep our children safe!