Discover what is happening on all 5 school campuses with Be The One.
Ferndale High School
A mentor was a special guest speaker for a class their mentee was in. Through the TextBridge service Be the One provides, the mentor texted their mentee to see if they would be there for it. The mentee texted back that they were not at school, but found a ride to school so they could be there for the presentation!
A Be the One mentee is graduating this year and was feeling nervous about what life would be like when they are not in high school any longer. As the mentor and mentee discussed fun summer plans, the mentor’s intention on staying in touch after graduation and potential job opportunities, the student seemed more at ease!
A mentor and student met for the first time this month and bonded over music together. When the mentor coordinator asked the student how their meeting went, they kept repeating “it was so awesome” and seemed giddy with excitement. This pair is our last “matching” of the school year and they will only see each other for a total of 5 meetings before the end of the school year. This positive interaction validated our decision to match them so late in the school year and we feel confident that they will create a solid foundation for their future meetings next Fall.
“I love my mentor!”
“Seeing my mentor is what I look forward to most at school.”
A mentor coordinator was looking for a student, but they were absent. However, another BTO student was in the same class and said, “That student is absent, but they love seeing their mentor.”
Looking Back (April) – Recruiting, Training and Matching new mentors and Students. Wrapping up school year (EOY party, BTO Merch, etc.) Activity of the Month: Design a Mentor/Mentee selfie (BTO will print out and frame it at the end of the year!)
Looking Ahead (May) – Facilitating and organizing year-end activities: Field trips, student interviews, year-end party, BTO Merch distribution, submit mentor/mentee selfies, etc. Activity of the month: Mentor & Student outing to Mug Shots!
Total: 41 Mentoring Pairs (3 more than last month)
2 Part-time BTO Coordinators at FHS – Annie Anderson works Mondays and Tuesdays. Michele Barmore works Thursdays and Fridays. No on-site Mentor Coordinator Wednesdays.
Mentors/Mentees will be matched until April 28th. All incoming Mentor Interest Requests will be trained/onboarded next school year.
EOY Party Save the Date – Fri, June 2nd from 2:45-4:45pm – Ferndale Aim & Game – All FHS BTO Mentors/Mentees are invited
Permission slips for Mugshots field trip and Year-End Party at Aim and Game went out this month. Mentor and Junior Mentee were selected to help organize BTO Senior recognition events for year-end party.
Mentor Coordinators check in with each other and collaborate on a regular basis.
Lynden High School
Stories to share:
Student of the Month! Last month I shared a story about a remarkable student turn-around. This young lady made huge strides in the past few months in improving every aspect of her school life: better attendance, grades, more positive attitude, planning for college after high school. The mentor has been a huge support in her life. This week we found out the student was recognized as “Student of the Month” by our admin. She received a certificate, photo with the principal, and a special T-shirt. She was just beaming when she shared the news with her mentor. We all enjoyed celebrating her success!
Chill, Chat, Challenge—our new favorite game! While taking a professional development course, I learned about this game and thought it might be a good resource for mentors and students. The card pack has 3 different levels of cards (in terms of question difficulty/personal vulnerability) and different question decks for teens and adults. I asked several pairs to try it out and let me know their opinion. Many enjoyed the game and let me know how much they learned about each other. Even matches who had been together for a long time ended up learning new things and discussing topics they never had before. Now some want to play it every week! I have even had a couple of mentors purchase the game for use with their families.
Teaching Social Skills and Connecting: A staff member has been mentoring a student who moved here from Ukraine. As you can imagine, they have been through a lot of trauma, disruption, and loss. The student is on the quieter side and has been struggling to connect with others and get involved. Her mentor has been a huge help in bringing her out of her shell over this year as well as helping her meet other students. The mentor had the idea of inviting other students to play games and join activities with them to help make connections and start friendships. As a result, they have a really special group mentoring situation; the student is developing friends and starting to participate more in school activities. So grateful for this mentor’s energy and vision.
Highlights of this month:
· 3 New matches made for students who have been waiting since since November and January.
· Finished 12-week course: Mentors Supporting Youth Mental Health. Now working on what to teach mentors for future Mentor Equipping Sessions next year.
· 2 Closure meetings that went very well! These are always tricky, but I was so proud of the positive participation of both students and mentors who handled things so gracefully.
· Spring Merch order: Students and mentors who missed our fall order received their BTO merch. So fun to see how many students wore theirs to school the very next day!
· Photos: Taking photos of all pairs for the end of the year. Most really enjoy receiving their photo, even if they don’t really enjoy getting their picture taken. This year included some fun selfie options.
· Let’s go on the boat! Collecting permission slips for end of the year cruise on May 18th. Students are very excited about the event.
· Supporting Multi-cultural Night: many students with mentors are participating in this event. Mentors are encouraging participation and helping work on an art project for the event by decorating “feathers” which will be placed on a large wing display/photo op station—“Our Roots give us Wings.”
· May 1-5: End of year interviews for students with Partners for Schools board members for program evaluation.
· May 18th End of year Cruise
· Multi-cultural night May 25
· Last meetings: matches will be wrapping up by June 2. Most students and mentors will have 5 more meetings this school year.
· June 9: Graduation at LHS
Lynden Middle School
Stories to Share
A Fantastic Job
I took a needed leave of absence to pursue my teaching degree and finish up the final stage in the process. I was able to do my student teaching in the amazing Lynden School District, and it was a great success! I built some great relationships and learned quite a bit. However, I also missed the students and mentors in our program, and I gladly came back to a full running program with 10 new matches. THANK YOU STACEY for doing such a great job in my absence. The program is booming!
One student was matched with a new mentor and the two had a good time. However, the student was not sure the mentor was the perfect fit for her. I told the girl to give it some thought, and she was willing to meet the mentor one more time. The second time around the girl told me, “It was GREAT this week! We really connected.” I am proud of the girl for being willing to try again and I hope this will be the beginning of a fantastic mentoring relationship.
A Fun Break
One student was taking her state test on the same day she was seeing her mentor. Often in this situation, the mentoring meeting would be moved to another day. However, there was not time to reschedule. Thankfully, there was an opportunity for the student to work on the test for an hour and then take a break with her mentor before she needed to return. The student felt refreshed and returned to the test with more energy and enthusiasm. Mentors bring encouragement in life and academics as well.
Mentoring by the Numbers at LMS
· 41 active matches at the middle school (Ties our all-time record @ the MS!)
· 10 new matches were made since I left in January
· 6 Students on our wait list, waiting for a mentor
· 30 potential students interested or referred to the program
· 825 hours of mentoring so far this school year
Recruiting and Training New Mentors: We had continual mentor trainings and a stream of new mentors come in. Usually we match them almost immediately, because of our wait list.
Interviews: We just interviewed all our 6th and 7th grade students for end of the year thoughts and comments. We use this information to create reports and stories to promote the program.
· End of the Year Celebration Event
· Student Surveys, gathering of information for end of the year report
· Wrapping up the year and last meetings
Lynden Christian High School
ELEVEN pairs are meeting weekly at Lynden Christian Schools
ONE new match was made at the high school in April
TWO students are on the waitlist
FIVE students have been referred or are interested in having a mentor
STORIES TO SHARE:
I love her already!
A new match was started in April, and they are kindred spirits- they share a zest for life, creativity, games, and talking. The mentee was eager to have a mentor since the beginning of the new semester. She faithfully checked in with me weekly, and when I finally got to tell her about a possible match her smile was contagious. Their first meeting they chatted the entire time, and after their second the mentee told me, “I love her already! She’s amazing!” Her mentor feels the same and is so thankful they get to spend time together going forward.
I hope my mentor stays forever…
A student chooses to have a mentor for a variety of reasons- one of the main reasons I find is for friendship. Earlier in the year a mentor wasn’t so sure that the student really wanted to meet, but while the mentor was doubting, the student was expressing to others just how much their mentor means to them. The student even shared their hope that the mentor will be present for the long haul because the student doesn’t want to imagine their life without their mentor in it. During the initial New Mentor Orientation, we tell potential mentors that they often don’t know the impact they are having on their student sometimes for years to come. The student may seem distant or unsure, but the reality is most students are truly invested in the relationship and may even be a little fearful that their mentor won’t come back at some point. Consistency is key, and that is something this mentor is bringing to their student’s life.
The end is nearing- we have six weeks left of school which for many matches means only four or five more sessions together plus our end of year celebration planned for May 18 on Bellingham Bay.
With each new match my joy and passion for the program grows- it is so fulfilling to see these mentors pour into their student week after week and fill their cups.
UPDATES + UPCOMING PLANS:
· Pair photos + student interviews
· End of year surveys for mentors and mentees
· End of year celebration: May 18
· Merchandise distribution to new matches
· I will be finished subbing for Brian at Lynden Middle School and have gradually started integrating at Nooksack Schools. I will be at Nooksack through the end of the year while Lauren is on her maternity leave through summer.
Nooksack Valley High School
Not currently a member of our Community Portal, request the full Mentor Coordinator Reports with the form below.