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The opposite of bullying, Do Right Thing student stories profiled

November 2, 2010
By ANDREA GALABINSKI, nfmneighbor@breezenewspapers.com

Bullying in schools is a hot topic in the news, especially with new cyberbullying on the Internet.

The Lee County Sheriff Office's Do The Right Thing Program is the opposite of bullying. It profiles kind children doing kind things.

"As with anything, we see trends from time to time, and regrettably, bullying amongst youths has become epidemic," Lee County Sheriff Mike Scott said.

Article Photos

ANDREA GALABINSKI
Bayshore Elementary has been the top Do Right Thing Elementary School for the last two years. Pictured are this month’s honorees, Brianna Barton of Fort Myers and Julian Slaybaugh of North Fort Myers. Not pictured, Elijah Sanchez.

He noted verbal and Internet bullying and his personal concern on how they can affect a young individual.

"Positive programs like Do The Right Thing are even more critical today to stem that tide," Scott said.

Each month throughout the school year, the Lee County Sheriff's Office honors the positive actions of students through the Do The Right Thing Student Recognition Program. The goal of Do The Right Thing is to reinforce positive behavior among youths and to establish students as role models for their peers.

"This program is invaluable to our teachers and students," Bayshore Elementary Principal Lynn Herrell said. "Every year we focus on the importance of students working together in the classroom, being kind, helpful and a good friend to others. This program allows us to acknowledge and put students in the spotlight who help us create a positive school atmosphere. Each student who is nominated by a staff member exhibits the characteristics we want all students to emulate. 'Do the Right Thing' makes a difference at Bayshore Elementary School."

Four local children were honored:

- Thomas Taylor, of North Fort Myers, is a fifth-grade student at Littleton Elementary School.

Littleton Elementary School Assistant Principal Robert Cooper wrote in the nomination letter that Tommy has demonstrated exemplary character this school year. He serves on the Safety Patrol and frequently escorts younger children to class after breakfast. Tommy found money on the bus ramp during morning arrival and turned it in. The student who lost her money claimed it in the school office during the day. Tommy's actions helped ensure that a student received her lunch.

- Elijah Sanchez, of Lehigh Acres, is a third-grade student at Bayshore Elementary School.

Bayshore Elementary School Counselor Jan Moretti wrote in the nomination letter that Elijah was in the school breakfast line when a little girl began to cry uncontrollably. This kindergarten student was crying because she had forgotten her breakfast number. Elijah quickly came to her assistance, leaving his place in line in order to help her. He brought her over to me to help calm her down and then saw to it that she got to her classroom and teacher in order to get her number. He continued to assist her by making sure that she was able to get back in the breakfast line for her breakfast. I was so impressed with how caring and helpful Elijah was in helping this little girl.

- Brianna Barton, of Fort Myers, is a fifth-grade student at Bayshore Elementary School.

In the nomination letter, also written by Bayshore Elementary School Counselor Moretti, we learned that Brianna is a safety patrol member whose post is in the hallway outside the school cafeteria. Brianna is a very responsible and reliable student who has helped on numerous occasions to assist kindergarten students find their classrooms, look up their breakfast number and assist with breakfast procedures that are new to our kindergarten students. She is a valuable asset to our student body and we are so grateful to have such a caring, helpful patrol to guide and reassure those children needing help.

- Julian Slaybaugh, of North Fort Myers, is a third-grade student at Bayshore Elementary School.

Bayshore Elementary School third-grade teacher Amber Deming wrote in her nomination letter that when a student came into the classroom right as the bell sounded with a breakfast bag in her hand. Julian quickly reacted. Julian picked up her backpack, took out her homework folder, turned in her homework and put her backpack away without anyone asking for his help. I was speechless and in awe as I witnessed such kind and thoughtful actions. The student he had helped was able to quickly eat her breakfast before class began.

Other students honored include:

- Alden David Perrin, of Lehigh Acres, a first-grade student at G. Weaver Hipps Elementary School.

G. Weaver Hipps Elementary School Attendance Specialist Donna Sonnet wrote in the nomination letter that Alden David Perrin was taking a walk with his mother one day. While they were walking he decided to pick up trash. He said the road had so much junk on it that it needed to be cleaned up as it was not safe to walk on. I really feel that Alden deserves to be recognized by Do The Right Thing because you do not find too many six-year-old children that concerned about the environment and safety.

- Jeovany Donattelli, of Lehigh Acres, is a fifth-grade student at Manatee Elementary School.

Fifth-grade teacher Rebecca Brown, of Manatee Elementary School, wrote in the nomination letter that Jeovany is new to the state of Florida and to our school. When we were going over the procedure to check out books from my class library we were discussing why they have to sign them out because I lost over a 100 books last year. After hearing this, Jeovany has already brought me two loads of books from his home to put in my library and he says that he will bring in more. His generosity and kindness is refreshing and has truly touched me. I believe his initiative and compassion to help bring more books to this classroom, for the current and future students, should be rewarded.

- Alissa Flores, of Lehigh Acres, is a seventh-grade student at Alva Middle School.

Alva Middle School Physical Education Teacher Margaret Spradlin wrote that Alissa found a cellular telephone at school. She immediately turned it in to a teacher. Her actions reflect honesty and integrity.

- Daniel Stinehelfer, of Lehigh Acres, is an eighth-grade student at Veterans Park Academy for the Arts.

In his nomination we learned that Daniel became aware of safety concern. He reported what he observed to law enforcement. When the responding deputy arrived he continued to provide important information. The deputy was then able to take the next appropriate action. Daniel's actions reflect concern for his community and courage to help make the community safer.

- Keith Smith, of Fort Myers, is an eighth-grade student at Cypress Lake Middle School.

- Allina Martinez, of Fort Myers, is an eighth-grade student at Cypress Lake Middle School.

School Resource Officer Deputy Dana Berry at Cypress Lake Middle School wrote that Keith and Allina found an item at school that potentially posed a safety concern. They immediately turned it in to school authorities. Peer pressure or even curiosity can often influence children, causing them to make bad decisions - but not with Keith and Allina. I am grateful that Keith and Allina made the right decision that day.

- Sherelle Robinson, of Lehigh Acres, is a 11th-grade student at East Lee County High School.

School Resource Officer Cpl. Garfield Young at East Lee County High School wrote in his nomination that Sherelle put herself in harms way to break up a fight between two students at school. Her actions reflect courage and bravery.

- Cory Overlock, of Fort Myers, is an 11th-grade student at Cypress Lake High School.

- Matthew Achmuty, of Fort Myers, is an 11th-grade student at Cypress Lake High School.

Cypress Lake High School Assistant Principal Mr. Adam Kurtz wrote in the Nomination Letter that Cory and Matthew were walking toward the school bus stop from the main campus when they found a cellular telephone on the ground. The immediately turned it in to school authorities. The owner was very grateful that the telephone had been recovered.

- Dylan Dalbora, of Lehigh Acres, is an 11th-grade student at Cypress Lake High School.

School Resource Officer Cpl. Ranju George at Cypress Lake High School wrote in the nomination letter that Dylan located a very expensive I-Phone that had gone missing at school. The owner of the I-Phone was extremely grateful when it was recovered and returned.

- Ashley Mueller, of Fort Myers, is an 11th-grade student at Cypress Lake High School.

- Lauren Cathell, of Fort Myers, is an 11th-grade student at Cypress Lake High School.

Cypress Lake High School science teacher Richard Beckler wrote in the nomination letter that Ashley and Lauren cellular telephone on top of a locker after school one day. They immediately turned it in to a teacher. They are also very active in the life of their school, being involved on the Lacrosse Team and National Honor Society.

- Ashley Helenbrook of Fort Myers is a 12th-grade student at Cypress Lake High School.

- Logan Franklin of Fort Myers is a 12th-grade student at Cypress Lake High School.

Cypress Lake High School reading teacher Barbara Van Netta wrote in her nomination that Ashley and Logan have found time in their busy schedules to volunteer to help the Lee County Strikers Girls Competitive Soccer Team.

They both are displaying a wonderful work ethic and are inspirations to young athletes in our community. Ashley has also been involved in refurbishing work at a local park used by the Cypress Lake Hornets Pop Warner Team. She is also involved in several efforts to help at her school and community. Ashley and Logan are great athletes and have a great attitude.

- Elaina Callow, of North Fort Myers, is a ninth-grade Student at Riverdale High School.

Karen Harlow, of Bowling Green, Kentucky wrote in her nomination letter that Elaina studies very hard in school and attends church faithfully. She volunteers to help at the church and with the needy. She also stands up to peer-pressure. She also carried out a very heroic act this past summer. While attending a camping trip with a church group, they were conducting baptisms in a river. Apparently a waterfall was close by, and while holding the hand of a little eleven year old girl, they were caught in the river current. Elaina hung on, fought the current, yet together they were swept over the falls. Through it all Elaina kept the little girl from drowning, even though she herself suffered injuries. Not many people would disregard their own safety to think of someone else. I think she would be a great example of your program and doing the right thing.

The Do The Right Thing programs partners in law enforcement, local government, the business and Lee County educational community together in an effort to make a lasting positive impact on our community's young adults.

For information, call 477-1175.

 
 

 

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