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Lassen Family Services seeks nominations for Empathy in Education Award

empathyineducationFrom the first day of kindergarten through high school graduation, our children spend more time with school personnel than any other professionals.

That’s why school personnel are often the first to recognize and report signs of child abuse, making help available to the families and preventing further abuse. School staff also respond to the negative classroom behavior abuse inevitably produces.

Each year Lassen Family Services recognizes the front-line role school personnel play in strengthening families and preventing child abuse through the LFS Empathy in Education Award. We present the award for Child Abuse prevention month in April.

Empathy in Education recognizes individuals who are caring, compassionate, sensitive and look out for the needs of students. The LFS Child Abuse Treatment Program, or CHAT, came up with the award in 2008.

Anyone can nominate a teacher, aide, lunch-room personnel, principal, school secretary, maintenance staff, bus driver or anyone else who works in a school for the Empathy in Education Award. Just tell us, in 50 words, more or less, why the nominee deserves the award.

The award winner will receive a package of prizes donated by local merchants and mention in local media announcements. Nominations are due by April 4th, to the school office, at the LFS web site –lassenfamilyservices.org, via email to [email protected], or via regular mail to Tori French, Lassen Family Services CHAT program coordinator, 1306 Riverside Drive, Susanville, CA 96130. The winner will be announced at the Lassen Family Services Walk-A-Mile event on Saturday, April 12th.

Previous winners were nominated for having a ‘mind boggling’ dedication to the children, and ‘always thinking of what she can do to help.’

Nominations repeatedly called last year’s winner the best teacher ever. “She is caring and when someone is being bullied, she will step in and stop it and she will never turn her back on you,” wrote one of 13 students who nominated the winner.

“You can tell her anything,” according to an anonymous nomination.

“When someone gets hurt she is always on it and she makes sure they are ok,” another student wrote.

The first year one student wrote of her teacher, “If I had a problem, I would be able to go to her and tell her. She’s a friend, but at the same time, a teacher. I can tell her anything.”

Another student wrote “She looks out for us and she always wants us to have trustworthiness and be responsible in all the pillars of character.”

One woman nominated a maintenance worker, who she said, “watches over the kids, encouraging the staff to sing Happy Birthday to students in the cafeteria, collecting things left on the playground and opening classrooms for students who forget things.”

The nomination said the 2012 winner values people of all ages and has gone out of his way numerous times to help others.

Here at Lassen Family Services we believe this kind of empathy strengthens our schools and communities. Strong students and communities make a strong nation and help produce children who will stand up and say, “I don’t deserve to be abused.”

That’s the most effective Child Abuse Prevention we can promote. Nominate a candidate for the empathy in education award right now and help Lassen Family Services recognize caring and compassion in our schools.

Jeremy Couso
Jeremy Couso
SusanvilleStuff.com Publisher/Editor
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