Why it only takes one

Welcome back! I hope you are as excited as I am about this school year; it’s going to be a terrific one! We announced this year’s Character Education theme at the opening-of-school convocation, but I’d like to elaborate on what I think the theme could or should mean for all of us. It seems to me that “It only takes one” relates most readily to leadership, to taking the lead in situations where a single person’s actions could make a difference. A few examples, starting with the most obvious: Be the first to pick up the trash in the lunch area or anywhere on campus. Others will follow. Be the first to reach out to a friend in need. A single act of kindness can matter a great deal when you’re on the receiving end. Be the first to speak up against unkindness, against dishonesty, against injustice. It only takes one to take the first step, to be a good example for others, to be the first to do the right thing. “Be the change you want to see in the world,” Mahatma Gandhi once said. It only takes one to initiate change.

My best wishes for a wonderful school year.

—Dr. Jeanne Huybrechts