Submitted by Gabriele von Trapp
Teachers, students and support staff gathered in the Valley School gymnasium on Thursday to kick-off the new S.O.A.R. program. S.O.A.R. – Safety, Ownership, Attitude and Respect exemplifies and supports positive behaviors, respect for others, good choices and a safe environment. The new program is being introduced as a response to a recent school climate survey which identifies concerns regarding negative behaviors and provides solutions through reinforcement and rewards.
Staff cleverly and comically demonstrated negative behaviors in theatrical skits like riding in a mock school bus, walking in the halls with the sound effects of clanging lockers and food flying at a lunchroom scene. ASB students performed within the same scenes and readily established appropriate choices.
Principal Todd Smith addressed the assembly stressing how important it is for students and staff to support each other. “We want to create a positive, safe environment where we are all working together to achieve at high levels and create a greater sense of pride throughout our student body.” Mr. Smith shared the definition of ‘soar’ as a flight ascending higher and higher which is his wish for all Valley students in school and through life. He then led a chorus of “Eagles…..soar!” to rev up the enthusiasm for the program with the Valley Eagle mascot hanging in the wings.
With a positive reward system in place, pupils were encouraged to ‘soar to new heights’ and strive to receive Valley Eagles S.O.A.R. cards from faculty by showing positive behaviors and good choices. S.O.A.R. cards can be used in the S.O.A.R. Store to purchase items which include pencils, bracelets, chips, water bottles and much more. Each week will bring new opportunities and competitions for students to learn best behaviors and offer staff the occasion to teach what is expected as well as give positive reinforcement. All students will receive a free S.O.A.R. t-shirt and participate in raffles, Fun Fridays and Spirit Day events as well.
By the end of the school day teachers and staff expressed awe with how many cards were earned by students that day. Valley Eagles SOARed!