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Hoover City Schools, City of Hoover, and Partners Promote Kindness with Be Kind Week 2024 — “Spread Kindness”

Be Kind Week graphic

(Hoover, AL) - The Hoover City Schools District (HCS), in collaboration with the City of Hoover and community partners, is preparing for the annual Be Kind Week, a city-wide initiative dedicated to spreading kindness, addressing the social and emotional well-being of students, and fostering a culture of compassion and inclusion. From February 26 to March 1, 2024, the school community will come together to celebrate Be Kind Week, embracing the theme of "Spread Kindness" as a cornerstone of the District’s commitment to promoting empathy and taking a stand against bullying.

Throughout the week, engaging events and activities will empower students, faculty, staff, and community members to make a positive difference through acts of kindness and support. Along with the City of Hoover, our fantastic community partners are the Hoover Public Library, the Hoover Area Chamber of Commerce, the Hoover City Schools Foundation, and Hoover Helps.

HCS Mental Health Services Specialist Kathryn Stewart, one of the organizers of Be Kind Week, said,” In a world where we see so much ugliness in how people treat one another, I am proud that Hoover City Schools and the city of Hoover, have this week to focus on the beauty of being kind. Being kind to others is something all of us can participate in, and it is something all of us can benefit from. Whether through a smile, a helping hand, or standing up for each other. We can all make this world a better place one kind act at a time.”  

At the heart of Be Kind Week is the collective effort to participate in a service project known as “Stock the Counselors' Closets.” Students at each school can donate items tailored to their school counselors' specific needs, ensuring that every donation directly benefits students in need within the HCS community. This initiative underscores the importance of supporting one another and fostering a nurturing environment where everyone feels valued.

HCS Lead Counselor Terri Coleman said, “Our counselors are excited about quickly accessing items that meet student needs throughout the day with the Kindness Closet donations. They will have access to snacks when students come to their offices for snacks, extra clothing for accidents or dress code violations, toiletry items, or school supply needs."

One of the highlights of Be Kind Week is Pink Shirt Day, which is set for Wednesday, February 28. On this day, each school's faculty, staff, and students will proudly don pink shirts to symbolize solidarity and commitment to kindness while denouncing bullying. Additionally, the Hoover City Hall will illuminate its lights in pink on Pink Shirt Day, emphasizing the city’s dedication to cultivating a culture of caring and kindness throughout the community. 

“Pink Shirt Day is an important part of this week,” said Stewart. “This movement started in 2007 in Nova Scotia, when a new 9th-grade student was bullied for wearing a pink shirt to school.  Two 12th-graders heard about this and went out to buy 50 pink shirts for students to wear the next day to support the 9th-grade student. When they arrived at school, the majority of the students were wearing pink shirts! On February 28, we will wear pink shirts, with those across the world making a stand against bullying. Please join us in wearing pink shirts,” added Stewart. 

HCS Superintendent Dr. Kevin Maddox and Mayor Frank Brocato will visit schools on Pink Shirt Day to read a proclamation, engage with students, and speak about the significance of Be Kind Week. 

Dr. Maddox said, "Our students' academic achievements and success in life are among our top priorities in Hoover City Schools. In addition, we also strive to build their character. Be Kind Week is a special time to promote the power of kindness and empathy to continue creating a positive and inclusive school community. We always instill in our students the profound impact of their actions and the importance of treating people with kindness. We are grateful for the support of our partners and the City of Hoover in championing this initiative."

Hoover Mayor Frank Brocato said, “One of the great things about Hoover City Schools is their relentless efforts to extend learning beyond the classroom, beyond textbooks, and to teach students real-world lessons. A lot of importance is placed on the role of empathy and character in our everyday lives. Integrity and kindness must be guiding parameters that we teach from the earliest age and stress until students leave our halls. It is the City’s honor and responsibility to stand in solidarity with the school system as they instill these fundamental principles.”

Since the first Be Kind Week in 2017, it has evolved into a powerful initiative aimed at instilling values of empathy and compassion and creating a city-wide movement against bullying. Together, HCS, the City of Hoover, and our community partners hope to inspire people to spread kindness in Hoover schools, workplaces, and the community, empowering each other to make a positive difference every day. Join us as we come together to celebrate kindness!

About Hoover City Schools

Hoover City Schools (HCS) is a top-rated public school district committed to providing quality education and fostering academic excellence for each student across the district. With a focus on student success and achievement, HCS strives to create a safe and caring environment that nurtures learning and prepares students for future challenges. For more information or to join our team, visit hoovercityschools.net.