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Posted: November 22, 2009 12:30 a.m.

Livingston students vow to make their school bully-free

Brittany Thomas/

Students at Livingston Elementary School made a conscious decision to rid themselves and their school of "trashy behavior." The students wrote down a bad behavior and threw it in the garbage on their way out of an assembly that brought an end to a week of learning about preventing bullying at their school.

Principal Wendy Hughes spoke to a gymnasium full of third, fourth and fifth grade students Friday afternoon, and told them all that their most powerful body part was one they’d least expect — their tongue.

"Your tongue can do some very mean things," she told them. She explained that mean words can hurt other people very deeply and that the students should think very hard before saying something hurtful to one another.

Deputy Nikki Benton with the Newton County Sheriff’s Office C.H.A.M.P.S. program, spoke next, explaining to the students that people who bully tend to end up making poor choices that will eventually lead them to commit crimes.

"All of you are destined for greatness," she said. "But you have to take the initiative. Use those strong tongues you have to build up other people."

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