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Student Peer Organization connects older, younger students

Kidsday reporter Elizabeth Andre, second from right, with

Kidsday reporter Elizabeth Andre, second from right, with SPO advisor Karen Ehrlich, left, and members Glorivette Aedo and Samantha Estupinian. Credit: Catherine Modzelewski

SPO is a club at my school, Valley Stream North High School. I wanted to find out more about this club. I met with the advisor, Ms. Karen Ehrlich and a few members of SPO and asked them some questions.

I interviewed SPO members Samantha Estupinian, Hailey and Glorivette Adeo about this great club. The first question was obvious: What does SPO stand for? They told me Student Peer Organization.

I wanted to know what students did in this club and Glorivette said, “In this club we organize and make up lessons so we can come once a month to talk to seventh-graders about bullying, organization and important rules for school.”

The other members added that current club members visit classrooms of 10th-graders, tell them about the club and then give applications to kids who want to join. Then the kids have to have an interview, too. Club members must be in 11th or 12th grades, but kids interview for a spot in 10th grade.

Kids like being in this club because they want to be role models for the seventh-graders who are all new to our school. Other kids just like to interact in a positive way with the younger students.

Ms. Erlich, the SPO advisor, told me that she started this club in 1986. “I started this club because I wanted to have a positive connection between younger and older kids,” she said. “Whether it’s 1986 or 2016, kids need positive role models.”

Now I know more about this club. It seems interesting. I want to join this club when I am in the upper grades. Your school would like a program like this, too!

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