By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Red Ribbon Week Celebrated In Schools
The Stanislaus Consolidated Fire Protection District visited RLA last week where they showed students some of the gear they have to wear for fire calls. - photo by VIRGINIA STILL

During the final week of October, Riverbank Unified School District (RUSD) engaged in Red Ribbon Week along with several other schools throughout the nation. Through several activities like spirit dress days, door decorating, contests, and assemblies, students are educated in the dangers of drug use and prevention.

RLA (Riverbank Language Academy) Director Vanessa Rojas along with staff organized a week of activities to raise awareness. Students in all grades participated in spirit dress days, games, a door decorating contest and a poster contest.

Rojas shared that a highlight of the week was the Anti-Drug rally on Tuesday, Oct. 25. There were several stations set up on the black top on RLA campus that included Stanislaus Consolidated Fire Protection District, Officer Thomas Olsen with California Highway Patrol, Riverbank Police Services Deputy Jonathan Buck, San Joaquin County Probation Department, and their very own RLA Phast JV Club that students visited for an allotted amount of time.

“Students really enjoyed the presentations and they pledged to live a drug-free life,” said Rojas. “Students always enjoy seeing the officers and firefighters in uniform and they asked about what they do when they catch a bad guy. Students learned about fire safety and prevention, living a drug-free life, safety when out in public, and also the dangers of drugs, tobacco, and alcohol.”

The middle school students at RLA also had a special presentation by San Jose Police Department Special Unit, Mr. B. Spears where he discussed the dangers of drugs with real-life scenarios of kids and drugs.

Rojas added, “Teachers and staff are very grateful for our community volunteers that make it a priority to educate our children about the dangers of drugs.”

RPS Deputy Buck not only visited RLA, but also Mesa Verde Elementary, California Avenue Elementary, and Crossroads Elementary.

“What stood out to me the most was when I flew my drone for the students,” stated Buck. “Their faces would light up with excitement and they all wanted me to fly it more for them.”

During his visits to the schools, he discussed Halloween safety tips like to never get into vehicles with strangers, always have parents check the candy, stay close to family members while trick or treating and if they find open candy to throw it away or show their parents.

Buck said, “I hope they took away just overall awareness and safety from my visit.”

California Avenue Elementary had a fun week of dress up days to celebrate Red Ribbon Week like wearing red to show their pledge of being drug free, neon or bright colors, mix and match clothing, tie dye, and on the final day they could wear their Halloween costume.

Students participated in a classroom door decorating competition where Ms. Jantz and Ms. Luna’s fourth grade class won first place. They will receive a pizza party and second and third place classes will receive a donut party. They also had a bookmark contest and the winners will have lunch with Principal Erika Ramos.

On the final day of Red Ribbon Week, the students were given chalk to design their very own drug free pledge.

During the week the students were also treated to a BMX show, a fire department and Riverbank Police Services assembly.

The BMX assembly had students at California Avenue Elementary engaged with all their stunts during Red Ribbon Week. Photo Contributed
Riverbank Police Services Deputy Buck visited several schools during Red Ribbon Week promoting a drug abuse prevention and safety. - photo by VIRGINIA STILL
The students at California Avenue Elementary participated in a Bookmark contest to promote a pledge against drugs. Photo Contributed