Red Ribbon week at Dallas County School

Published 12:00 am Thursday, October 28, 2004

Throughout this week students in both Dallas County and Selma City School Systems have been promoting the importance of saying no to drugs as part of the annual Red Ribbon Week.

Each school is celebrating the event with a wide range of activities, including essay and poster contests and wearing a red ribbon on their shirts during the week.

On Monday, students at William R. Martin Middle School got the event started with an early morning march around the school while waving hand-made banners and shouting cheers.

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Ovetta Jones, organizer of Martin Middle School’s Red Ribbon Week events, said each day focused on a different theme.

Students and teachers on Tuesday wore unique or funny socks for “Sock it to Drugs Day.” Red caps were allowed to be worn at school Wednesday for “Cap off Drugs Day” and today everyone could bring their favorite stuffed animal for “Hugs Not Drugs Day.”

“This week about being drug free,” Jones said. “We are informing students that it’s the way to be.”

Martin Middle students who wear red ribbons on their shirts this week will also get a piece of candy at the end of each school day.

In the Selma City School System, elementary students received a visit last week from Reddy Ribbon, the mascot for Red Ribbon Week.

According to Mattie Gasaway, counselor at Clark Elementary, said the larger-than-life Reddy Ribbon came to the schools to talk about the history of Red Ribbon Week and the ways it is celebrated each year.

Along with the visit from the mascot, Gasaway said she is also doing a special project with the students called the “Road to Reaching My Goal.”

In the floor of a classroom at Clark, Gasaway has created a divided highway, with one road leading towards college and jobs and the other towards booze, drugs and death.

“We talk about making the right choices and following down the best path,” Gasaway said. “I’ve also been teaching the kids about who’s supposed to give them drugs and not to get in a car when someone has been drinking.”

Gasaway added that a representative from the Cahaba Drug Abuse and Alcoholism Center visits Clark each month to talk with students about how they are “too good to do drugs.”

At Selma High School today, students will be revealing the names of the winners of the Drug Free essay and poster contest.

Each school’s final Red Ribbon Week activities will be wrapping up on Friday.