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Southwest Junior High students march to fight against bullying in the area

Students are taking a stand against bullying and raising awareness by marching and speaking out - 13 On Your Side's Vanessa Gongora reports

SAN LUIS, Ariz. (KYMA, KECY) - Be a buddy not a bully, a message from Southwest Junior High students who held an Anti-Bullying March Friday, October 28.

8th grader Violeta Acosta, once a victim of bullying, presented a message to the bullies in front of her peers.

"No one deserves to be bullied. I also shared with the students that they're not alone. You know, they can come to any staff member and talk to them and truly just express how they've been feeling," says Acosta. "As well as to the bullies, because we know that they're suffering and I know that we can give them the help they need."

The students along with other community programs marched from the Junior High all the way to the District Administrative Offices to raise awareness.

Luis Marquez, Governing Board President says this is the first anti-bullying march in the Gadsden District with many more to come.

"I think it's very important to do an anti-bullying proclamation and month to bring awareness to all our kids," explains Marquez. "Bullying has been increasing a lot in the country."

The proclamation read by Acosta was signed by Marquez to make October Anti-Bullying Month in the Gadsden District.

​In her speech, Acosta also shares how bullying affects kids across the nation.

"Harassment and bullying have been linked to 75% of in-school shooting incidents," states Acosta.

Lizeth Esparza, Gadsden District's Superintendent says after COVID, the district knew the importance of the support they would have to carry out as students returned to in-person learning.

"If we don't have the social, emotional support, then academics are not gonna happen," describes Esparza. "So to us, this is very important because now our students are internalizing that importance of anti-bullying."

The students marched back to Southwest Junior High in silence in honor of those that lost their lives to bullying incidents.

The proclamation will be presented in the board meeting next month to make October Anti-Bullying Month official in the Gadsden District.

Article Topic Follows: Education

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Vanessa Gongora

Vanessa Gongora joined the KYMA team in 2022 and is the anchor/producer for CBS at 4 p.m.

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