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School climate affects everyone in a school community. Research has shown that improving relationships in schools increases academic achievement and decreases students’ likelihood to participate in high-risk behaviors. But it goes beyond just improving student outcomes. Poor school climate can create a host of issues, and improving it can make school a safer, more nurturing place for everyone.
Here’s a great example…Students at Anamosa High School in Jones County, Iowa thanked their cafeteria staff for their positive and friendly attitudes with a parade and celebration. As cafeteria workers entered school doors, students greeted them with hugs and high fives and presented them with roses and tiaras so that they could “be the princesses that they are,” said the teacher of the students who organized the effort. Cafeteria workers wiped away tears as students expressed gratitude for the services and enthusiasm they provide every day. Their efforts to acknowledge the work of school staff that might otherwise be overlooked made the local newspaper.
It is important to appreciate and cultivate relationships with everyone in a school community, and the students at Anamosa High School provided a heartwarming example of how acknowledging the work of others promotes a more positive school climate.