Inspiring decency in classrooms and communities

KERRI KNIPFING PHOTO Lisa Cholnoky (second from left) with Shelter Island School District staff and faculty. From left, Michael Cox, Dr. Christine Finn and Elizabeth Eklund.

KERRI KNIPFING PHOTO Lisa Cholnoky (second from left) with Shelter Island School District staff and faculty. From left, Michael Cox, Dr. Christine Finn and Elizabeth Eklund.

On December 4, Decency, a new school outreach program, began a partnership with Shelter Island School District. The program is a grass-roots movement dedicated to inspiring the concept of decency in everyday life — in both conversations and actions.

Lisa Cholnoky launched the Decency movement earlier this year to encourage civil discourse and respect through local initiatives that can grow on a national scale. The Shelter Island initiative is the first for the organization which will now create and implement programs for all grade levels and include local community outreach.

“We are excited to announce our first school program partner for Decency — the Shelter Island Union Free School District in New York,” said Ms. Cholnoky in a release. “This is a great opportunity for the school to energize students of all ages to treat everyone with respect and master the art of listening.

The Decency project started on Shelter Island, so it is entirely fitting to have its local school lead the initiative.”

As part of its program, Ms. Cholnoky explained that the school will develop its own fundraising effort to pay it forward and give other schools across the country the chance to spread the word and the experience.

“Call it the Decency domino effect, and Shelter Island School is the first to set off a powerful chain reaction,” she said.

Christine Finn, Shelter Island School District’s new superintendent, added “We are thrilled to be a part of this initiative. When our students leave the Shelter Island School, we want them to be people who are skilled communicators and problem solvers. We also want them to be decent to each other — by being kind, finding common ground, and respecting each other.

“We are ready to help spread the word.”

For more information on the Decency school outreach program, visit decency.today or email [email protected].

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