Sunnyside celebrates social justice, kindness

Banner with painting of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr and student notes
Students at Sunnyside signed this banner.

Carrying signs reading, “I dream of a world where people are not judged,” “I dream of a world where everyone is kind,” and “Treat everyone equally,” students at Sunnyside Elementary School marched around the campus’ yard with their teachers and parents in the school’s first ever Social Justice and Kindness March.

Held the Friday before Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, and in the spirit of his legacy, the march was organized by Sunnyside Elementary’s African American Parent Affinity Group in partnership with the wider school community.

The event showcased individualized pieces of work that demonstrated the students’ understanding of what kindness, equality and equity represents to them. In addition to the signs carried by students, a large banner with a painting of Dr. King, hand-written comments from students, and the words “I Have a Dream” was displayed across the yard.

According to Principal Renee Marcy, parents organize monthly art lessons with the PTA Art Committee that teach about different cultural heritage; and culturally responsive teacher-led lessons, which explore the understanding and acceptance of each other’s backgrounds, cultures and customs.

“Through its continued traditions, Sunnyside is adopting new forms of building a stronger sense of community from within,” Principal Marcy said. “We encourage students to create and celebrate causes they connect to and care about.”