The AP Giannis Middle School in San Francisco's Sunset district is attempting to address conflict and bullying by displaying close-up photographs of teachers' smiling mouths at lunchtime. Students will be given prizes for correctly guessing whose mouth they are looking at.
It's part of "Respect Week," a district-wide effort to promote tolerance. As part of the week, the Middle School is holding a special "Smile Day." Students seen smiling will receive special stickers.
A district spokeswoman explained that smiles make people seem approachable, friendly, and easier to get along with, according to the Ex.
Nationally, bullying in schools has been no laughing matter
A teenager in Minnesota is believed to have committed suicide this week following anti-gay harassment from peers. Gubernatorial candidate Tom Emmer had earlier stated that schools should not address bulling.
Assemblymember Tom Ammiano has been working on a California version that is basically a copy of New Jersey's law. In collaboration with Equality California, Ammiano expects to introduce that bill within the next few weeks.