Unique anti-bullying program created after Columbine massacre

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) — The tragedy at Columbine High School in Colorado will never be forgotten.

And now, 17 years later, a special program to help children and schools deal with bullying and other issues is coming to San Diego.

It was the deadliest high school shooting in U.S. history. 

Twelve innocent students and a teacher at Columbine High in Colorado were killed by two students.

The first victim was Rachel Scott.

"She was bubbly an outgoing beautiful girl and she was the one always bringing home the stray cat or dog … And reaching out to the kid that was being picked on," said Darrell Scott, Founder of Rachel’s Challenge.

Rachel’s father is in San Diego and stopped by KUSI News.

Since the tragedy, Darrell Scott has lead the way to try and make schools safer by teaching about how to replace bullying and violence with kindness and respect.

He started a program called, "Rachel’s Challenge" that’s now being implemented in schools all over the world.

"We reach 2 million students a year in live settings. We have 50 presenters that travel all over the world," Scott said.

Presenters hold assemblies and meetings that challenge students to think and act with kindness and respect.

"We follow up with counselors and principals to make sure things are OK and we also see bullying reduction in some places," Scott said.

And now, Rachel’s Challenge is coming to San Diego.

"We want to plant 1 or 2 presenters full time here in San Diego," Scott said. " If we can have a presence permanently and with with schools.  I’ve already met with the police force, the chief of police, some folks with the Chargers. We want to be able to partner with organizations that are already here we can’t provide all the answers but we can provide certain answers that are needed."

Students at Serra High School recently attended a Rachel’s Challenge assembly.

"I was super inspired and anti-bullying and spreading kindness across your school and campus," said Sara Ruhe, a student at Serra High School.

"I kind of learned not to be like a jerk to people and be more nice," said Jonathan Gabbard, a student at Serra High School.

The idea of Rachel’s Challenge is to reach the heart of the students.

And so far, that’s exactly what’s happening.

Categories: Local San Diego News