Garden Grove High School Students Spearhead Initiatives to Build Positive Culture

student leaders after assembly

Last month Garden Grove High School student leaders organized and ran an all-school assembly called Words Hurt to address important topics like eliminating racist and derogatory language, standing up against hate, and promoting a positive and empathetic school culture and climate.

The assembly is part of the school’s commitment to be a “No Place for Hate School” and featured a panel of student leaders with representatives from Black Student Union, Latinos Unidos, Bridges, Sisterhood Happening Effortlessly (SHE), Health Occupations Students of America (HOSA), ArgoLog Media, and the varsity football team. The assembly began with a video created by student Brandon Nguyen which highlighted the powerful impact words have on all people.  The panel was moderated by English teacher Shelby Laura who asked students tough questions about the impact of racial language used in literature and songs, as well as how to be an upstander to hate when someone is using language to tear others down.

“We are proud of our students for using their voices to highlight the importance of respecting all people and embracing diversity,” said Lan Nguyen, Garden Grove Unified School District Board of Education president. “Positive school cultures are created from the inside out and start with young people who are willing to stand up for doing the right thing.”

Following the assembly, the panelists encouraged all students to sign school-wide pledges making several commitments including being more mindful about the things I say, being more tolerant of other people’s identities, speaking up for others when hurtful words are used, and standing up against offensive language.

To watch the Words Hurt video created by Garden Grove High School student Brandon Nguyen, visit: