HAMPTON -- Celebrating student success. Normally, that deals with grades on a report card. But these days at Kecoughtan High School in Hampton, it means celebrating efforts to stand up to bullying.
Students do this through Rachel's Challenge.
"It's very touching," said Lizzie Savage, the president of Kecoughtan's Rachel's Challenge program. "I've always wondered if what we're doing is enough."
Earlier in the school year, a student reportedly made and posted a "hit lift" online. And some students say there is bullying -- just like in many schools across America.
But, the Rachel's Challenge students are also showing others there are positive things going on at school that are helping to change the culture to one of kindness and respect. The proof is a growing chain of kindness, in which each link represents an act of kindness a student has done at school.
When they picked up the chain and stretched it, it went through the cafeteria, down the hall, and outside the building.
Their efforts to start getting more students to embrace kindness and respect are being noticed by Newport News City Councilman, Chris Stuart.
"160,000 students across our great nation don't go to school each day because of some kinds of bullying," Stuart said. "What you're part of today has been documented to reduce or stop violence or suicides across the country."
Perhaps a one-word quote carries even more weight. When we asked a group of students if these efforts seem to be making a change at school, five students unanimously said, "Yes."
"it starts with one person standing up and saying they're not going to bully anymore," Savage said.