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Greece students ask you to join #BeNicer campaign

July 16, 2019 08:09 AM

GREECE, N.Y. — If you haven't heard, News10NBC is asking you to be nicer online. We've launched the #BeNicer campaign to try and put an end to cyberbullying.

Today, we head to Lakeshore Elementary school in Greece. Students and staff there are working to embrace the #BeNicer mentality every day.

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Before school let out last month, News10NBC spent time with students and staff at Lakeshore.

Principal James Palermo talked to us about the #BeNicer campaign.

"This is so important right now," he said.

Palermo already works hard to create what he calls a "superhero culture" at the school.

"We need to develop superheros. We want to make sure they do good and are helping people in the community every chance they get."

It's not always easy in a digital age.

"We see it all the time in schools. Kids getting cell phones at younger and younger ages," Palermo said. "When kids are bullied online they're upset. They come into school the next day and they are worried, they have tears in their eyes."

Palmero himself has been a target.

"Ya even as adults we face ridicule in leadership positions."

In fact, during a recent publicized event at Lakeshore, he was wearing a T-shirt that read, "Dude, Be Nice."

His photo was posted on the internet and he faced ridicule.

"I caught some grief online for wearing a shirt that said that. They said I was not dressed like a principal and should've been wearing a shirt and tie."

Palermo is passionate about changing the tone on social media. He and his 450-plus kids gathered to form a #BeNicer human sign in the school's playing field, which you can see in the attached video.

He told them through a megaphone, "Social media can be a platform for doing great things or it can become a platform for some pretty bad stuff. That's why we want to promote #BeNicer!"

Palermo says the message is not just for his kids, but adults too.

"As adults in the community we've got to teach our kids to be superheros. They respond to that and they want to do good in the community, so we have  to teach them how to do it by modeling it for them. We have to let them know here's what we did today to promote good within the community."

If you'd like to join team #BeNicer or order a #BeNicer T-shirt to help out a great cause, click here.

Credits

Pat Taney

Copyright 2019 - WHEC-TV, LLC A Hubbard Broadcasting Company

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