District kicks off year with kindness

Orange wave hits the high schools

After witnessing one of Houston Kraft’s motivational speeches at Mo-Ranch in Hunt, TX, a vision was created for Student Council adviser Allison Stamey. Kraft spoke about the importance of genuine positivity and kindness.

Two years later, Stamey wrote a proposal to create a new tradition for LISD. Inspired by the words of Kraft, Stamey wanted to normalize kindness.

“In February 2017, I wrote a proposal to have a kindness convocation and kick off kindness week and a kindness year,” Stamey said. “I started realizing after hearing Houston speak that you can’t just do one week of kindness [and] you can’t just do one day of kindness. You have to truly practice kindness every day for it to become normal.”  

After Stamey proposed the idea to the district assistant chief of schools, Andy Plunkett, he welcomed the project with open arms. Plunkett took Stamey’s project under his wing.

“If it weren’t for Mr. Plunkett, it probably would have never taken off and that’s why we give him kudos for taking it,” Stamey said.

On Tuesday, Aug. 7, this vision came to life. Students from all five district high schools gathered at the Leo C. Stuver Auditorium for the first-ever Kindness Convocation.

The convocation had nearly 900 students in attendance, dressed in orange LISD BE KIND shirts. All students at the convocation were named “Kindness Ambassadors.” The convocation kicked off the Kindness Year and has touched the hearts of many. Kindness ambassadors include organization leaders, team captains and players.  

“I have always believed that most students’ hearts are filled with love and kindness and they are just needing an opportunity to let their guards down to be more accepting to others,” Plunkett said.

Then it was the student’s turn to take the initiative. Throughout the second week of school, the Kindness Ambassadors from all of the high schools took on various challenges and spirit days.

“After the first week, I saw that everyone had a little more energy or [were a] little more positive with their outlook on school,” Kindness Ambassador and student body officer Wesley Brewer said. “I think it made [the school] a better environment for everyone to be in.”

Moving forward, the district wants to push the kindness initiative to the feeder schools.

“The biggest obstacle will be expanding it to the middle schools and elementary schools in a way that is more than just dress up days,” Plunkett said. “We want to go deeper with some of the pay it forward cards and Kindness Challenges.”