MILTON (CBS) – Bullying is a big issue, and one government study found about 20 percent of teenagers say they’ve been bullied at school. But, sometimes, just a couple of words can lift a whole school.
The middle school kids in St. Agatha School in Milton are still buzzing about what 13-year-old Jess LaFlamme did – although, in her defense, her teacher started it.
“Well, in my religion class, my teacher, Miss Perez, gave us an assignment to write about what we want our legacy to be when we leave this school,” LaFlamme said.
So, she decided her legacy would be sticky notes.
“I put a sticky note saying two nice things about everyone in the middle school in their lockers,” La Flamme said.
Miss Perez said she had no idea what she would set off. “I thought I’d get two quick paragraphs, and that would be it.”
Instead, while her classmates were at an assembly, LaFlamme popped from locker to locker, leaving dozens of personalized Post-It notes – all anonymous.
“Everyone at the school has different talents,” LaFlamme said. “Some people at the school are good at art, so I’d say, ‘You are an amazing artist.’”
Classmates say they still have those tiny squares of positivity.
LaFlamme’s parents, Joe and Randi LaFlamme said they’re not surprised by her kindness. “She always has a smile on her face and a dance going on. I think we learn more from her than she does from us,” Joe LaFlamme said.
The students at St. Agatha’s wanted to know who left the sweet surprise and did some detecting.
Student Ava Boyle encouraged dozens of students to write a note to LaFlamme.
“I was going to write her a note, but then thought everyone should since she does everything for everyone,” Boyle said.
LaFlamme’s classmates pulled off the kindest form of revenge.
“Everyone was standing around my locker, and I was like, ‘OK,’ and then I opened it, and it was amazing.”
Miss. Perez said LaFlamme’s locker was full of sticky notes bearing positive messages. “It was on the door, on the inside. It was everywhere, and she was overcome with emotion.”
“I cried,” LaFlamme said. “I was very overwhelmed.”