Enka Students Remember, Reflect
Enka Students Remember, Reflect
Posted on 03/15/2018
Two Enka High School students hold a chain full of loops with messages of love and support.By Tim Reaves
BCS Communications Department

This week, Enka High School students showed that they can be leaders through all kinds of circumstances.

Students planned several structured and supervised opportunities to unite the school and honor the 17 victims of last month’s tragedy at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. The “What’s Your Seventeen?” challenge encouraged students to speak to 17 new people, smile at 17 new people, and offer 17 compliments. Students and staff (who so desired) wore red and grey ribbons – Marjory Stoneman Douglas’ school colors.

Enka was one of several BCS high schools that held remembrance events on Thursday.

"As students, we were able to take everyone's thoughts and create activities that would allow each student to speak their own voice,” said senior Kennedy West, a member of the Student Government Association. “Our plan went off without incident. It was a positive initiative for our students.”

The week’s events culminated in a student-led “walk-in” remembrance event on Thursday. Those who chose to participate met at three Reflection Zones on campus to hear the names and stories of the victims and to reflect on the tragedy in Florida in a safe space.

“As students, we were able to take everyone's thoughts and create activities that would allow each student to speak their own voice.” - Kennedy West, Enka High Student Government Association“It took the politics out of the situation and brought home the realness of this situation,” said senior Will Redmon, who read the victim names at one of the Reflection Zones with fellow senior Hogan Rayle. “People’s lives were lost, and there’s real feeling in that.”

“It was about sending our prayers and support to the families and being thankful that we’re safe here,” Rayle said.

Before the walk-in, students used their weekly Navigator classes to write messages of love and support on loops of construction paper. They connected the loops to make a long chain, which will hang in the cafeteria. They also shared their personal thoughts and discussed issues of school safety during the special period.

“That’s not uncommon for us,” said Principal Tonya Robinson. “The day of the week was different, but every Friday our Navigator classes deal with issues of character development, leadership, and unifying our school.”

Navigator classes provide a forum for students to take on serious topics like healthy relationships, addiction, bullying, Internet safety and social media, career planning, and college preparation, she said. Like every other week, the school’s faculty and staff provided a supportive framework for students to “navigate” their own lives and the world around them. With that supportive foundation, students had everything they needed to turn a national tragedy into a positive moment for Enka.

“Our students really stepped up and said what they needed to say in a constructive way,” Robinson said. “The message here was ‘we are Enka, one community, united despite differences in culture, skin color, and opinions.’ We remain respectful to one another and pledge to each other that if we hear something or see something, we will say something.”

A victim’s fund has been set up for the families at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Find out more at www.gofundme.com/stonemandouglasvictimsfund.
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