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Tiger Talk: Positive school climate

At Pine River-Backus High School, we know how important school climate is. That’s why we are always focused on trying to create as positive an environment as possible.

We already feel like we are successful in creating such a climate, but we are always looking for ways to make the school day even better.

We started a system last school year that we call Good News Cards. These are simply postcards that we put a proud PR-B design to with the purpose of being filled out for students when they have positive moments.

We really promote these with our staff, encouraging them to fill one out at any moment they deem worthy. The goal is to not only catch the students we would expect in these moments, but also some who might just surprise us, and it happens!

Having the cards at our fingertips definitely helps us see things that could easily go unnoticed and unrecognized.

The students usually aren’t aware that they have received a card before it is mailed home to parents. So the parents get to have a proud moment first and then hopefully share another proud moment with their child.

Staff members have signed the card, which can help provide some positive relationship building with the student. With the student realizing something good has not gone unnoticed, there may be an increase in the positive behavior.

But this isn’t the end of the line for the Good News Card. We have a quarterly celebration assembly where we recognize all of the honor roll students. Every student who had received a card during the quarter is entered into a drawing for some really cool prizes!

Many local businesses and some individuals donate all kinds of items for us to give away. As more community members start donating to help recognize how good our kids can be, I just can’t help but feel that our students must be feeling a greater sense of worth within the community, and that is so important.

So thanks to everyone who has already been contributing to the success of this system and if you would like to donate something, please contact us at the high school.

Denton (Denny) Newman Jr.
I've worked at the Brainerd Dispatch with various duties since Dec. 7, 1983. Starting off as an Ad Designer and currently Director of Audience Development. The Dispatch has been an interesting and challenging place to work. I'm fortunate to have made many friends, both co-workers and customers.
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