Charles Barrett Kicks off Mentoring Matters Program
Charles Barrett Elementary School kicked off its Mentoring Matters program for the 2012-13 school year on Oct. 18 with an event that provided an opportunity for mentors to meet with their mentees and their mentees' families and be officially welcomed by Principal Seth Kennard.
"This is our fourth year with the Mentoring Matters Program at Charles Barrett, and I am thrilled with the results," Kennard said. "The impact our mentors have had on our students' academic achievement and overall well-being has been significant. I am grateful to our mentors for their dedication and know this will be a great experience for our students."
"This is going to be a great year, with our largest yet number of mentors and mentees. We have many fun activities planned and everyone is already very excited about the months ahead," said Social Worker and Mentoring Matters Coordinator Ana Bonilla.
Barrett teachers and personnel from the Alexandria Police Department, Court Services Unit and Sheriff's Office serve as mentors to 33 Charles Barrett students. The program helps the students make better decisions, improve learning and study skills and become more connected to their school and the Alexandria community. Participants gain role models and have access to adults who will listen to them, give them guidance and expose them to positive experiences. Through the program, students will participate in field trips and have biweekly meetings with their mentors.
Barrett students are enthusiastic and excited about the program. Teachers have commented that students who have participated in the program in the past have shown enthusiasm in class and mentioned their mentors during related discussions. In general, all staff members have observed positive outcomes in behavior, academic focus and positive attitudes toward school for mentoring program participants. The impact at the school has been so great that there is currently a waiting list for students from teacher referrals, and individual students are constantly approaching the school social worker asking for a mentor. The school is always looking for people who are looking to make a difference in the life of a young child.
For more information, please contact Bonilla at 703-824-6960.