Cultural Appreciation


Photo | Vicki Hale

Natalie Burgess, Column Editor

On Thursday, May 5, students,teachers and parents were invited to celebrate together and learn about each other’s culture at Bethel Middle School.

“It was a celebration of different cultures within our community,” ESL teacher Vicki Hale said.

This was the third annual Culture Night, and it gathered about 500 participants. Each year, the event is held at a different school.

“Since we started doing it, our attendance has increased each year,” Hale said.

Students from all over the district attend, but the majority are in high school. The room is set up with many different tables, most oriented toward younger students, that are intended to educate the attendees on varying countries represented within the school. It is supposed to promotes acceptance between races.

  “Before, when I came to this school, I saw a lot of racism in the school,” senior Fernando Resendiz-Gonzalez said. “Since that [culture night] has been happening, I’ve been seeing people change and be more friendly”

Many other classmates agreed with this claim, making it apparent the goal has begun being fulfilled.

“It was fun, I think [the student body] likes Hispanic people now,” senior Christian Villalobos said.

The support from the student body encourages new students to feel comfortable and improves learning for all students.

“There were a lot of different cultures that went,” Gonzalez said.

Over the last three years, the night has gained support from the school district and has improved student interaction.

“It’s promoting acceptance of other cultures within the school,” Hale said, “I think it’s had a very positive impact.”