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Sacred Heart students learn how to stand up to bullying
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Sacred Heart School students Christian Silveira, Katie McMillian and Mary Nascimento perform a skit during an assembly on Tuesday to demonstrate the types of bullying happening in school. - photo by NANCY ANGEL / The Journal

Bullying happens everywhere. Whether it’s the snobby girl at school who always makes fun of the small kids, or the biggest guy in the neighborhood who’s constantly trying to beat someone up while taking their belongings; no matter what situation or form it comes in, bullying can make a child feel depressed, hurt, and sometimes isolated from the world.

 In an effort to stop the bullying epidemic around campus, Sacred Heart Parish School invited “The Power of One,” a bullying-proofing performance for elementary school children, on Tuesday, to explain the roles in bullying, and the negative connotations associated with it.

The Power of One is a series of skits presented by actors who use boxes, colors, and masks to vividly portray what bullying is, what can be done about it, and how every child has the power of ‘one,’ the power to report and deal with bullying when they see it.

“This assembly is of great importance to us,” said Sacred Heart Administrative Assistant Linda Travis.  “Every child needs to learn about bullying because they will experience it at some point in their lives.” During The Power of One performance, actors Lily and Michelle Drecksler put on a variety of masks as they played the different roles of a bully — a purple mask when they played the victim, and a yellow mask for the bystander. “During our performance, we show students the types of roles bullying does in our society,” said Michelle Drecksler.  “We encourage students not to be bystanders because they can be as guilty as the bully themselves. We want kids to speak up whenever they are in presence of a bully.” The highlight of the performance was when the actors picked a volunteer from the audience and dressed them up as a superhero.  While the volunteer looked into the Power of One box (which contained a mirror), the student saw himself/herself. “Students need to know what to do when they encounter a bullying situation,” added Travis.  “Power to the One emphasizes the need for individual action to make the community a safer, better place.”  At the end of the performance, actors encouraged students to take the Power of One anti-bullying oath to not bully others and report it whenever bullying is present. “I enjoyed this assembly,” said Sacred Heart student Mary Nascimento.  “It taught me to stand up for myself against bullying and speak out whenever I see it happening.”