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Lower Merion School District


Bala Cynwyd's Volleyball Tournament raises funds for "START"
Bala Cynwyd's Volleyball Tournament raises funds for "START"

Bala Cynwyd Middle School recently hosted their 3rd Annual Volleyball Tournament as students, staff and families gathered in the gymnasium for a fun-filled evening competing on the court for a good cause. The proceeds from the event will benefit the school's Student Assistance Referral Team (START), which helps provide a safety net for students who need assistance with transition during their middle school years.

Grade level squads went head-to-head in tournament style play as they vied for coveted Knights' Volleyball Trophy, an ice cream sundae party for the winning team and, of course, bragging rights! This year's event raised more than $1,000 for the START program.

The START team at Bala Cynwyd has many responsibilities. First, the START team assists with connecting any students that may benefit from the support of an additional adult with staff mentors. To kick off the program, the START team has a mentor-mentee breakfast at the beginning of the school year. Mentors also check-in with their students regularly. The START team organizes after-school "Fun Days" in an effort to get students to partake in fun and educational age-appropriate activities. This allows students to see staff members and classmates in a different environment while helping to develop new relationships. Lastly, the START team identifies students who exhibit behaviors, actions or thoughts that might inhibit their learning. Anonymous referrals for high-risk behaviors can come from parents, teachers, counselors, administrators or students. Communication between families and the school is the foundation of the START Program. The START Team meets weekly to discuss individual students, plan START days and discuss and implement resources to positively impact our school.

To view a slideshow of pictures from throughout the evening, click on the image below!

LMSD's Strategic Plan, "All Forward," provides a framework for a collective, intentional and positive approach to change. Its five aspirational pathways guide us toward continual innovation and transformation to further educational excellence for every student. The Student-Teacher Volleyball Tournament serves as an example of Strategic Pathway #5: A Spirit of Community. To learn more about #LMSDAllForward and the Strategic Pathways, click here.

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