by Julie Landi, Staff Writer
The week of October 2 – October 6 was the Week of Respect at Morristown High School – a week that had everyone jumping with glee. What could excite a bunch of high schoolers more than participating in various themes as ways of teaching respect and kindness? Never has the school looked more alive than it had during that week.
The impact of the Week of Respect is best displayed by some first-hand experiences from students at our school. The following week, I set out to interview several of my classmates to see how the week of respect impacted them. The first question was:
What did you think of Kindness Week?
“That it was respect week,” said an anonymous eleventh grader.
I realized then that I had to change my question, for it was not respectful to refer to the Week of Respect incorrectly! My new question became:
What did you think of the Week of Respect?
“When was that?” responded another anonymous eleventh grader. While he may not have realized there was a Week of Respect, at least his question was phrased respectfully! I’d say that proves that kindness week had a successful effect on this student!
“I don’t feel it was effective in anything,” said another student. Perhaps this fellow did not quite understand the question – I believe the intended answer was “I felt it was effective in everything!” Unfortunately, I did not get the chance to check if the response was a mistake or not, for the student (respectfully!) explained he had to leave. Whether he realized it or not, I’m sure that the week of respect had an absolutely profound impact on this student.
I did intend to interview more people regarding this subject, but apparently everyone was busy just being incredibly respectful. Towards everything. Hence, everyone who declined my request for an interview did so obscenely respectfully, answering with “I don’t feel like it” and “Why would I do that?” It truly is inspirational to see how these students have taken the Week of Respect to heart. Who knows how cruel these students may have been, had I tried to interview them before the week of respect? I can not even fathom what barbarism there may have been without the Week of Respect!
Since most students were much too busy respecting to be interviewed, I did not get to ask any more specific questions. Some students were asked if they felt like a kinder person after the Week of Respect. To this, the responses given were “Not really…” and “No.” To the cynic, this may make the week of respect appear to be a failure, but these answers really do exemplify the success of the week of respect! These students are correct, you do not feel like a kinder person – you are a kinder person! The depth to which these students understand the question is truly inspiring – such complex and nuanced thought could not have been achieved without the Week of Respect!
In short, the week of respect was abundantly successful! The memories of this week are ones I am sure students will cherish for a lifetime. Many students agree:
“Pajama day was the only useful day.”