Male Staff Members at Ira Jones Mentor Students through New Club
All 18 male staff members at Ira Jones Middle School donate their time after school at least once a month to mentor and role model a select group of male students, as part of the new “Ira Jones Boys Club.”
The program began about two months ago when staff members recognized the need of a male role model in some of the male students’ lives. Eighty boys were invited to participate and about half regularly come to the meetings.
“We invited at-risk boys who need a male to confide in,” Ira Jones Principal Dr. Ed Boswell said. “But any boy who wants to be a part of the club can certainly join.”
The Boys Club will next meet from 2:45-4 p.m. on Thursday, February 24, 2011, in the school media center, 15320 Wallin Drive, Plainfield. For this program, the boys and staff members plan to play board games and discuss relevant topics, like bullying.
Boswell came up with the idea for the club after reflecting on his own life as a middle school student growing up in a single-parent household.
“I really took my own life into consideration and what I needed as a kid, and what we are providing here for these kids is awesome,” Boswell said.
The concept of the Boys Club is very casual. The students and staff members get together to hang out and talk about the importance of making positive choices.
As the weather warms up and as the program develops next school year, Boswell foresees the Boys Club participating in after school activities or even local field trips to sporting events.