When students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida return to class for the first time since the February 14th shooting which left 17 people dead, they will be greeted with outpourings of support and caring. Among these will be a banner signed by students at Windsor Central Middle School.
Students signed the banner on Monday, February 26 so that teachers at the Middle School can overnight it to Florida. It will hang when students return to class Wednesday, February 28th.
“We told students during morning advisory class that they could sign the banner during their lunch period. My kids didn’t want to wait until lunch. They wanted to sign it immediately,” said art teacher Nicole Cappello, who designed the banner.
Teacher Melissa Klumpp saw an Instagram post from a teacher at Stoneman Douglas asking those who wanted to help to send banners welcoming students back. Klumpp approached Cappello and they came up with the idea of putting a quote on the banner. They chose one from Maya Angelou - "Nothing can dim the light that shines from within."
“Even to have the hallways look a little different will hopefully help,” said Cappello. “We chose a quote to try to inspire the kids. Obviously things can go wrong but don’t let that ruin what is inside of you.”
“I think being so far away you do think, ‘What can I do?’ You do feel helpless. The (MSD) principal wanted the banner and I’m happy to say something from Windsor is going to hang in Parkland,” said Klumpp.
Students hope the banner helps the Stoneman Douglas students transition back to school.
“It shows people care about them. It shows there are good people out there,” 8th grader Alexis Hill.
“I think it’s really helpful. We want to make the kids feel safe after what happened,” said 8th grader Nina Spano.
“It feels like we’re making a difference so it won’t happen again,” said 8th grader Emma Duell.
Students at the Middle School aren’t the only ones in Windsor to reach out to students at Stoneman Douglas. AP students at Windsor High School have written letters to AP students at Stoneman Douglas. Also, the Art Club is creating a banner that students will sign during lunch on February 27, then send to Stoneman Douglas.
“It’s unfortunate but it’s a reality for any school. You can’t say, ‘It won’t happen here,’ any more. Hopefully this is a little ray of hope to see kids uniting and supporting them. Even here in little Windsor, NY we’re thinking of them,” said Cappello.