by Lisa Tome
It was hard to walk down the hall at North East Elementary School last week without bumping into Batman, Superman, or Captain America.
Red Ribbon Week, which is a nationwide initiative, was underway.
NEES Guidance Counselor Dale Kerns said that the event is focused on recognizing the dangers of alcohol, drugs, and tobacco. Kerns said older students were also taught refusal skills.
The message was particularly timely at that school. Since the school year started in September, at least four North East Elementary students have been directly impacted by addiction. Four students were directly affected already this school year and had lost loved ones due to overdose.
System wide, there were specific days set aside for dressing up in crazy clothes and extra lessons from guidance counselors about making smart choices.
Each day, a specific lesson was emphasized, such as wearing boots or sneakers to "kick drugs out of your life", Superheroes say no to drugs, red ribbon day and more.
Students weren't the only ones who dressed as superheroes. Staff sported Wonder Woman, Batgirl, and Captain America gear.
As part of the special week, staff also took a bus out into the community after school on Wednesday, visiting neighborhoods where students live and gave away books and treats.