The Student News Site of Oakdale High School

The Oakdale Post

The Student News Site of Oakdale High School

The Oakdale Post

The Student News Site of Oakdale High School

The Oakdale Post

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A Letter to My Classmates

During+their+most+recent+meeting%2C+members+of+SAVE+worked+together+to+plan+ways+to+promote+a+sense+of+safety+throughout+their+school.
Emily Lockard
During their most recent meeting, members of SAVE worked together to plan ways to promote a sense of safety throughout their school.

To my fellow classmates,

Over the past few weeks, we have spoken to several students about how their experience at Oakdale has been altered by the confrontations that led to physical conflict. The answers varied, but nevertheless, a strong sense of community and desire for change was a common theme. . 

Junior members of Oakdale’s Students Against Violence Everywhere (SAVE) club Alexa O’Neil and Angel Abate responded to the incidents of violence that occurred in mid-February at our school: “It should be known in our school that it’s not okay to randomly start a fight with someone,” voiced Abate.

“It has put less of an emphasis on learning, it kind of made everything going on with the fighting a priority more than it should be,” furthered O’Neil.

To combat the instances of increased violence in the school, SAVE worked on projects to build a positive school climate and raise awareness on school safety. Throughout club meetings, members have written letters to their trusted adults in the building, designed posters to develop a club promise, and created videos promoting the Maryland Safe Schools Tip Line and Hotline, which were displayed on the daily announcements. Additionally, members put together a safe schools board in the main hallway, and advocated for Say Something Week, which ran from March 4th-8th, on the club’s Instagram. 

SAVE also plans to partner with other schoolwide organizations or clubs to build unity amongst the staff and students. Club member Emily Lockard and President Evie Graham, worked together to interview Oakdale’s Student Resource Officer (SRO), Deputy Pilarcik. Graham and Lockard asked questions similar to, “Why did you want to become an SRO?” and, “What are your relationships like with the students in the school?”. 

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A post shared by OHS SAVE (@save_ohs)

This interview can be seen on the club’s Instagram, as Graham and Lockard aim to reach as many students as possible by introducing them to Pilarcik, and change their preconceived perspectives on SROs. Pilarcik mentioned in his interview that he wants students to feel comfortable coming to him to express any concerns they may have. 

Graham felt that the club holds a responsibility to advocate for the change that Oakdale students are looking for, and to make implementations that allow students to voice their concerns. Graham explained, “I truly believe that no matter the weapon, violence of all kinds can be deadly. If we don’t treat these incidents with such care and fragility, we would be doing a disservice not only to the Oakdale community, but to ourselves.”

Sincerely, 

The Oakdale SAVE Club

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About the Contributor
Emily Lockard
Emily Lockard, Editor
Emily is a Junior at OHS and is a member of the dance team.
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