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Ecole Mallaig School family and school liaison worker Olga Filipchuk speaks to students about bullying during Pink Shirt Day last week.
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Mallaig School goes big for Pink Shirt Day

Mar 05, 2013 09:15 am | By Ryan McCracken | St. Paul Journal

Schools across the country celebrated Pink Shirt Day last week, and in the spirit of the anti-bullying campaign Ecole Mallaig School held its event a day early so that no one was left out.

“We chose to do the 26th rather than the 27th so that we could include the whole school because our kindergarten students only come every second day,” said Mallaig family and school liaison worker Olga Filipchuk. “We’ve never done Pink Shirt Day at Mallaig School and I just had this idea that I wanted to create Pink Shirt Day with a bang.”

The school jumped right on board with Filipchuk’s vision, and provided the funding for every student to be given a pink shirt with the 2013 Pink Shirt Day logo to wear.

“We decided that we wanted to create a huge peace sign, a human peace sign I call it,” she said.

With the help of the entire school, the pink “human peace sign,” was a hit, and thousands of people took notice.

“We got a huge response on Facebook, I think because we did it on the 26th, and a lot of people were Googling and trying to figure out what people we doing,” she said. And by Friday, “We had over 4,000 hits on our Facebook page.”

The assembly concluded with a school-wide game of rock-paper-scissors with a twist, encouraging the students to stand behind each other, said Filipchuk.

“There’s 300 people in our gym and they take each on a challenger. If you lose, you go behind that challenger and become a team of two,” she said. “We ended up with two human chains and believe it our not, Heather Yuill, a kindergarten student won the championship with about 100 or so people behind her.”

Yuill, who was present for the activity because of the school’s decision to hold the event a day early, picked up the big victory with a unique approach, as Filipchuk noted that she heard Yuill’s winning strategy was “just rock.”

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