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A majority of National Heritage Academies (NHA) schools participated in Safe Schools Week Oct. 16-20. The week was full of activities and information for schools, students, staff, and their communities, practicing and learning about school safety. This year’s theme was: We Are Safety Smart.
"Safety is always top of mind for NHA, and it is great to see our schools show their commitment to safety,” said NHA’s Director of Safety and Health Brian Gard. “Thank you to the school safety specialists and their teams for putting in time and effort to create engaging activities for our students to participate in.”
Participation in Safe Schools Week is one of the elements required to earn a Safety Eagle Award. School safety specialists and their committees are very creative in the types of events they organize and materials they create.
“I am always amazed at the ways staff find to teach important safety lessons to our scholars,” Gard said.
Several schools are highlighted below for their efforts during Safe Schools Week.
Brooklyn Scholars Charter School
New York’s Finest stopped by Brooklyn Scholars for Safe Schools Week, imparting wisdom in the classroom. Representatives from the New York Police Department gave a presentation on personal safety, community policing, and the role of law enforcement in maintaining safety. The main messages to students were about remaining aware of your surroundings, not talking to strangers, crossing the street safely, and keeping personal information private online. The Fire Department of New York also gave scholars a fire safety presentation. The activity included lessons on fire prevention, evacuation procedures, and the correct use of fire extinguishers and alarms.

NYPD speaking to students.
Brooklyn Scholars met with representatives from the New York Police Department and the Fire Department of New York. 

Endeavor Charter Academy and Hamtramck Academy
Scholars learned a different lesson every day of Safe Schools Week at Endeavor and Hamtramck. The week began with internet safety lessons and continued with lessons on fire drills and evacuations at home, lockdown procedures, and anti-bullying messaging. Middle schoolers also pitched in, serving as helpers on Driveline. Hamtramck scholars also met with the Hamtramck Fire Department.
Gate City Charter Academy
Scholars at Gate City participated in several activities, including creating an evacuation plan and discussing that plan with their families. They also thanked their local fire department with one class sending them a book of gratitude, and another making a paper quilt out of thank you notes.
Greensboro Academy
Greensboro Academy welcomed a plethora of visitors to school for Safe Schools Week. Lower elementary scholars got a visit from the Greensboro Fire Department to learn about fire safety, including lessons on equipment and procedures. Upper elementary students learned all about the world of animal safety at home and in the wild from the Guilford County Animal Control team. Middle schoolers met with local meteorologist Alex Schneider to learn about being safe during weather events.
Pembroke Academy
Scholars at Pembroke Academy celebrated with educational opportunities from several entities. The Detroit Fire Department stopped by with a fire truck to demonstrate how they keep people safe. Scholars also learned about OK2SAY, Michigan’s student safety program, allowing students to confidentially report potential harmful or criminal activities at school. The FBI Community Outreach Program also made a stop at Pembroke for Safe Schools Week.
Pinnacle Academy
Bus safety was at the top of mind for Pinnacle scholars. They learned about ways to get on and off the school bus safely as well as walking to and from their bus stop. Teachers were involved with the celebration, too. They were awarded “safety citations” every time they were seen using excellent safety strategies. The teacher with the most citations received a Safety Week trophy.

Student drawing.
Pinnacle scholars drew art related to this year’s Safe Schools Week theme: We Are Safety Smart. This scholar’s drawing warned against bad actors on social media.

PreEminent Charter School
Scholars at PreEminent took part in a Safety Poster Competition and posted all of the artwork in the school’s halls. Artwork submitted to the contest centered around various types of safety. Submissions included messages surrounding bullying prevention, what to do in a lockdown situation, and other school safety rules and procedures. Students also took time to color in this year’s Safe Schools Week logo.

Safety shields students have colored.
PreEminent scholars took part in a poster contest and colored in this year’s Safe Schools Week logo.

South Arbor Charter Academy
South Arbor celebrated Unity Day as a part of its Safe Schools Week activities. Unity Day was celebrated on Oct. 18 and is meant to unite people and promote kindness, acceptance, inclusion, and anti-bullying messages. Students and staff wore orange to unite and stop bullying. Lower elementary students also learned about fire safety from the Milan Fire Department.
Wellspring Preparatory High School
Wellspring Prep set up a booth with resources and materials for scholars to learn about the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline, a nationwide hotline. Scholars of all ages also signed the School Safety Pledge. Wellspring Prep’s School Safety Pledge includes a commitment to respect, standing against bullying, and committing to alert trusted adults or OK2SAY of any threats to anyone at the school.

988 Booth.
Wellspring Prep set up a booth promoting the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline, a public hotline people can use in times of crisis.

About National Heritage Academies:
National Heritage Academies (NHA) is a network of over 100 tuition-free, public charter schools across nine states, serving more than 65,000 students in kindergarten through 12th grade. For more information, visit

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