Southern Poverty Law Center’s Teaching Tolerance Program has Named South Mountain High School a “Mix It Up”

Posted by Communications at 3/22/2017

The Southern Poverty Law Center’s Teaching Tolerance program has named South Mountain High School as a “Mix It Up” Model School for its exemplary efforts to foster respect and understanding among its students and throughout its campus during the 2016-17 school year.

South Mountain High School is among 76 schools to receive the honor, and it is the third year they have been recognized.

“We commend South Mountain High School for finding innovative ways to create environments where respect and inclusiveness are core values,” said Teaching Tolerance Director Maureen Costello. “Though Model Schools vary in size and demographics, they all serve as great examples of how a school—any school—can cultivate these values among their students, faculty and staff.”

 The Mix It Up Model Schools met five criteria: They each hosted a Mix it Up at Lunch Day during the 2016-17 school year; they included different members of the school’s community—cafeteria staff, aides, administrators, teachers and students—in organizing the event; they followed up with at least two additional Mix It Up-related programs or events on campus; they publicized Mix It Up at Lunch Day or celebrated inclusiveness with posters, announcements and other media; and their event was seen by students and school officials as a success.

 Mix It Up at Lunch Day is a simple call to action. By asking students to move out of their comfort zones and connect with someone new over lunch, the event encourages students to identify, question and cross social boundaries. Many schools plan activities for the entire day, and some use the event to kick off yearlong explorations of social divisions.