Stories to share:
One of our mentoring pairs is in their 4th year together and going strong. For a variety of reasons, they are no longer meeting on campus officially, but their close relationship continues. In talking with the parent about arrangements, she wrote: “The mentoring program has been such a blessing to my daughter with everything she has been through the past couple of years. It has worked out better than I ever could have imagined! Her mentor is wonderful.”
One of our students who has had a mentor for several years was having a very hard time coming back to school this fall after all the disruptions of the past year and experiencing a lot of anxiety. She missed the first four weeks of schools. Parents and grandparents couldn’t get her to come. Teachers and school counselors had called home with no results. I asked the administration if the mentor and I could do a home visit and asked Mom if she thought that would help. Right away, she gave permission for us to visit. The mentor and I went to the student’s home and spent about 45 minutes talking with her about how she was feeling and what would make things better. We secured a promise from her to come to school the following day—and she did! Her attendance has been much better since. The relationship with her mentor was the key to getting her back on campus.
- Several long-time mentoring pairs had to move off campus this year for one reason on another. I’m happy to see that supportive relationships continue to benefit students, even if they are no longer officially enrolled with us.
- New requirements for volunteers presented some hurdles in getting all of our mentors cleared and going again this fall. I’m happy that the district has been able to accommodate mentor exemption requests so we can keep them connected with their students!
- A new 9-week quarter schedule of 4 classes at one time for students allows them to focus on those classes more fully. It does present some scheduling challenges as mentoring times have to be determined each quarter. I’m thankful for supportive PE and elective teachers who are allowing students to meet during their class time. Some have been able to meet before and after school as well.
- Over the past few weeks, I lost my mom to cancer and missed quite a bit of school and work. I’m thankful for Brian and the other coordinators for stepping up to help in my absence, as well as the very supportive staff in my building who pitched in to keep mentoring meetings going when I wasn’t here.
- New Mentor Orientation: November 16
- Soliciting new student referrals to match with available mentors in our pool