Comerica Bank Brings Anti-Bullying Theatre Tour to Detroit Public Schools

Comerica Bank Brings Anti-Bullying Theatre Tour to Detroit Public Schools
Grant will fund performances for 7,000 students at 18 schools

DETROIT/Dec. 9, 2013 – Comerica Bank has provided the Detroit Public Schools Foundation with a $10,000 grant to bring the Jewish Ensemble Theatre (JET) series of plays about bullying to 18 Detroit Public Schools, reaching more than 7,000 DPS students this school year.

The grant serves two needs for the Detroit Public Schools; an avenue to address bullying and a way to bring more arts into the schools.

 “There has been a growing concern for the amount of bullying that takes place in schools, creating a priority of educating students about the nature of bullying and its consequences,” said Dr. Glenda Price, president of the Detroit Public Schools Foundation. “We are very happy to partner with Jewish Ensemble Theatre and even more grateful that Comerica has brought this wonderful learning opportunity to our students this year.”

The JET tour features three plays, each targeting a different age group:

  • I Was Just Kidding is designed for elementary students and chronicles three friends. One friend consistently insults the others and justifies them with an “I was just kidding” response… until she loses both of her friends.
  • Mean Girls is for upper elementary and middle school girls showing the interactions of four middle school girls in a popular clique and addresses the issue of abusing another girl in order to gain or maintain status within the group.
  • WORD is for middle and high school students and features four actors who tell the story of the results of an incident of bullying from three different perspectives:  the bully, the victim and a witness.

As part of the program, teachers receive a teaching guide with discussion exercises for before and after the plays as well as questions for students to think about during the performance. A post-performance discussion also takes place following each show to engage students about what was presented and how it made them feel.

“We’re very proud to be able to provide this opportunity for Detroit Public Schools students,” said Janice Tessier, national manager of corporate contributions, Comerica Bank. “The Jewish Ensemble Theatre series is a great way to get the bullying discussion started in a manner that resonates with different age groups. While the performances are entertaining, they get students to recognize bullying as a problem and learn ways to prevent it in the future.”

The JET tour is the latest in a number of Detroit Public Schools initiatives Comerica has supported to improve the educational experience and creating learning opportunities for students. Programs include the launch of the Detroit Public Schools Foundation Transportation Fund supporting field trips to destinations such as the Detroit Zoo and the Fox Theatre and the sponsorship of the Innovations for Learning TutorMate program, which uses technology to connect DPS students in the classroom with Comerica tutors in their office. Comerica also sent a group of robotics and pre-college engineering students from the all-girls Detroit International Academy on a behind the scenes tour of the Chevrolet Belle Isle Grand Prix.

For more information about Jewish Ensemble Theatre or to schedule a performance, contact Chris Bremer at c.bremer@jettheatre.org.

For more information about the Detroit Public Schools Foundation, visit the Foundation’s website at www.detroitpsfoundation.org.

About Comerica Bank

Comerica Bank, with 214 banking centers in Michigan, is a subsidiary of Comerica Incorporated. Founded in Detroit in 1849, Comerica continues to invest in Michigan. Comerica’s $17 million renovation of its building at 411 W. Lafayette in Detroit was completed last year and the renamed Comerica Bank Center is now the bank’s Michigan Market headquarters. Comerica Incorporated (NYSE: CMA) is a financial services company strategically aligned by three business segments: The Business Bank, The Retail Bank, and Wealth Management. Comerica focuses on relationships, and helping people and businesses be successful. To find us on Facebook, please visit www.facebook.com/ComericaCares. Follow us on Twitter at @ComericaCares.

###

Media Contacts:

Kathleen A. Pitton
Comerica Bank
(313) 584-4523
kapitton@comerica.com

Joe Ferlito
Franco Public Relations Group
(313) 567-5031
ferlito@franco.com

This entry was posted in Student Showcase.