700 more kids need mentors

Wisconsin State Journal Editorial:

A parent — usually a single mother — has the courage to pick up a phone and call for help.
That’s how most children and teenagers enter the Big Brothers Big Sisters program in Dane County.
But too many requests for mentors for the children of caring yet struggling single parents go unfilled. Some 700 young people in Dane County are on the organization’s waiting list, which has grown in recent years during the recession and slow economic recovery.
That’s almost as many children and teenagers as the 750 who now are matched with an adult to meet with them a few hours each week, either at an area school or on their own.
The push is on in Dane County to recruit more Big Brothers and Big Sisters for this fall to provide a positive influence in more kids’ lives.

2 thoughts on “700 more kids need mentors”

  1. To William P. Rowe and others (hopefully everyone) who would like to help the less advantaged children in our community: PLEASE, VOLUNTEER TO BE A MENTOR OR TUTOR! Whether through Big Brothers and Big Sisters, a school-based program in your neighborhood, or something (ANYTHING!) else, please consider finding a way to share your time, your love, and your understanding of what it takes to succeed in school with a young person who needs it.

  2. Mentoring students is very important and not just less advantaged kids, but the kids doing “okay”, and those who are not asking for help though they need it.
    My brief experience with mentoring or tutoring is that as a mentor, one is brought in to help with a particular assignment that is due, that just needs to get done, whereas the help most kids need requires much more time and concentration to bring their knowledge and skill sets up to the level needed to actually do the homework assigned.
    When working with kids in middle school who still have not mastered the grade school material, or high school kids lacking mastery of grade and middle school material, helping kids with “tomorrow’s” homework assignment only creates a facade of success and accomplishment. The reality for the kids (and the nation) remains bleak at best.
    Unless mentors and tutors (and students) have the time and willingness to master the prior but critical material needed to meet “tomorrow’s” assignment, we are simply fooling ourselves thinking we are making any contribution to the students’ education.

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