Student group focuses on freshmen

Student group focuses on freshmen

Developing character, setting goals and improving relationships were just a few of the topics discussed by dozens of freshmen during the first meeting of the Knight Crew at Silver Creek High School held recently (Tuesday, Oct. 16, 2018) in the auditorium.

Crew, an initiative of the district’s Counseling Department, entails small groups of students who meet twice a month with one adult in a caring, nurturing environment to support their academic and personal needs. The adult acts as a team leader/coach and connects with and advocates for the ninth-graders in a student-centered program.

“Students need at least one adult they can talk to,” said high school counselor Mark Baldelli. “They share common issues and do best when these issues are addressed proactively in their school.”

The purpose of Crew allows for relationship-building, academic progress monitoring and character development. Crew allows students to build positive connections with their peers and their crew leader. Crew leaders strategically address and assess these goals. The small group setting gives students a sense of community, connectedness and belonging.

“Students need to be viewed and taught holistically,” added high school counselor Alison Gondek. “We are trying to tend to both their personal and academic needs.”

Here’s what is planned or Crew during the 2018-2019 academic year: Groups of approximately 10 to 15 students meet twice monthly for about 30 minutes during third period with an advisor. Each month has a theme and covers topics related to that theme. The school year kicked off with a campaign to get the students to understand the purpose of Crew and a team-building effort. In October, the ninth-graders set both academic and personal goals. Themes for the rest of the year are: November/Healthy Relationships; December/Empathy and Gratitude; January/Respecting Differences; February/Appreciation Oneself & Others; March/Identification of Character Strengths; April/Career Exploration; May/Fitness & Adventure; and June/Celebration.

Expected outcomes of the implementation of Crew include camaraderie/connectedness among students, stronger connections between families and the school, improved work ethic, better attendance and more positive attitudes.

Crew leaders for the 2018-2019 academic year at SCHS are Beth Miller, Paula Redeye, Jessica Rosenburg along with Baldelli and Gondek.