Tuesday, September 21, 2010

A Lesson On Honor

When I was a freshman in high school, I went to a small Christian school. They were pretty relentless in starting off the year making fun of the freshmen. We were the “peons” on campus and they drove that point home. I will never forget how they made us wear these ugly beanie hats the first week of school. Why did I wear it, you ask? Well, because if you didn’t wear your hat, they made you suck an egg. I’m not joking.

This year, we made the decision to return our girls to a private Christian school after having them in the public school system for 3 years. My oldest daughter is in the 8th grade. They call the seventh graders the “sevies.” Do you know what they did for the “sevies?” They matched each of the 7th and 8th graders up and as a service project, the 8th graders each decorated a 7th graders locker. They gave them treats in their locker and little gifts all day long in their classes (dollar store items). In addition, they bought them lunch and sat with them! I was so impressed.

My daughter went to the dollar store and she bought the nicest things she could find. Cinnamon smelling perfume….things that she’d want. She said, “I wanted to spoil her because I know what it’s like to not get a good gift.” She’s not kidding either. My daughter has gotten the short end of the stick a few times in gift giving situations. I was so proud of her for going “all out” for this girl that she didn’t know; and being prepared to make her day special.

What a contrast. I experienced one aspect of a school – one that to me, emphasized "status", and my daughter is experiencing another. She is experiencing what schools SHOULD be doing. They are acting like leaders and examples. They are trying to make the underclassmen feel wanted, loved, and special – not ridiculed, shamed, or embarrassed. No jokes. No gimmicks. They are loving on them. And that’s how it should be!

I want my daughter to learn that with age comes maturity and responsibility. In order to be looked up to, you have to earn that respect and not look down on those younger or more inexperienced than yourself. Her school is demonstrating that fact to the kids and I’m so honored to have her a part of it.

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