Words on the walls in the halls

Olivia Briggs, Editorial Board Member

Liberty’s walls were looking bare, and something to showcase what Liberty’s all about would be perfect.
Lucky for us and the empty walls, Assistant Principal Andrew Brownson and his Word Committee of Natalie Crouse, Jasmine Le, and Laura Kouzmanova came up with a plan.
It started with the PATS statement.
PATS tells us to pursue excellence, act with integrity, and take care of each other.
“The mission statement, PATS, makes it easier to summarize what Liberty stands for,” Le said.
“We’re trying to make a positive behavior system,” Le said.
In elementary school, there were fun sayings or statements that would encourage good behavior. When we went into middle school, there was a similar, though less structured, version.
“In high school, there’s really nothing to support kids or their behavior,” Crouse said.
After making the PATS statement, eye-catching posters elaborating on the acronym were put up in each classroom. Look around, you’ll find one!
Then came the walls. The saying, “Act with Integrity,” was pasted above one stairwell, and the “Purse Excellence” in another, and the T is scheduled to be up in the other stairwell later.

The final step was the mission statement set up in the lunchroom. The message is simple: “We are a community for educating and supporting students to become meaningful contributors to society.”
There are many other ways these students could have gone about implementing these behavior systems, so why quotes on the walls and posters?
“Other schools have big spreadsheets, charts or lists that you read in your syllabus, but we didn’t want that. We wanted some simple points,” Crouse said.
Students are much more likely to see and remember short acronyms like PATS and sayings on the walls than they are to remember ten long, wordy paragraphs from your syllabus.
“As you’re walking down the halls, the words are a reminder to act with integrity, pursue excellence, and treat others with respect,” Crouse said.