SpencerWestSummitHORSHAM (August 25, 2014) — Like most schools, Keith Valley Middle School in Horsham, PA does not tolerate bullying. To help create an environment that fosters positive interpersonal relationships, members of the KV faculty and administration developed a nationally recognized, grass roots bullying prevention initiative called KV K’NEX in 2010. Wasting no time, students will gather on the fourth day of school for KV Cares Day where they will kick off the year-long program. The Hatboro-Horsham Educational Foundation is honored to join their efforts by presenting Spencer West, a double-amputee, author of “Standing Tall: My Journey” and star of the documentary “Redefine Possible, The Story of Spencer West” on Friday, September 5 at Keith Valley at 8:45am and 10:00am.

“The HHEF is extremely proud to introduce Spencer West to the Hatboro-Horsham middle school students and teachers,” said Nancy DeLucia, Executive Director, Hatboro-Horsham Educational Foundation. “Mr. West has redefined what is possible and inspires students by sharing his powerful experiences of overcoming challenges. The HHEF looks forward to West’s visit. We know his presentation will make an impression on our students.”

Christine Jenkins, instructional coach at Hatboro-Horsham, is a member of the KV K’NEX team.  “Our program ensures that that best practices in bullying prevention, character education, restorative practices and student leadership are incorporated into our learning activities,” explained Mrs. Jenkins. “We are grateful for the support of HHEF in bringing Spencer West to our school. His program aligns perfectly with our mission, which is to help all students feel safe, respected and significant.”

Through several Innovative Learning Grants funded by the HHEF, teachers have the necessary support to implement anti-bullying programs that teach tolerance and foster individuality and growth.

About KV K’NEX

It is an ongoing goal of Keith Valley Middle School to help our stakeholders develop a greater sense of community and to foster positive interpersonal relationships. KV K’NEX is the umbrella that encompasses ongoing best practices in the areas of Bullying Prevention, Restorative Practices and Character Education. These activities include cross-grade advisory meetings, use of “circles” for classroom and group discussions, assemblies, team-building activities and community outreach endeavors. Our mission is to “connect” these ongoing activities into a unified, consistent, inclusive, and self-sustaining pro-social program to help all students feel safe, respected, and significant. To learn more, visit the KV K’NEX webpage.

About Spencer West

Spencer West was born with sacral agenesis, a genetic disorder that left his lower spine underdeveloped and his legs permanently crossed. At the age of three, his legs were removed below the knees. Two years later, at the age of five, they were amputated to below his pelvis to encourage mobility using his hands. Growing up, West attacked new challenges and never let his disability interfere with his ability to succeed. In 2012, at the age of 31, West and two friends climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro, one of the world’s highest peaks and raised over $500,000 for clean water projects. He has always had the desire to change the world and make a positive impact on others. He is accomplishing this dream through speaking engagements where he shares how he has overcome many personal obstacles including bullying, isolation, failure and pride. West travels the globe sharing his unique perspective while encouraging a world of tolerance and acceptance.

About the Hatboro-Horsham Educational Foundation

HHEF (www.hhef.org) is a nonprofit organization that provides funding for programs that enhance the learning experience of our students and engage the community at large.

Editors’ note: If you are interested in covering the September 5 presentation, contact Lisa Bailey at 215-872-5846 or lisabroidabailey@gmail.com.

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