WATCH D.O.G.S.® (Dads Of Great Students) is an innovative program of the National Center for Fathering focusing on improving education in our nation’s schools by using the positive influence of fathers and father-figures for a two-fold purpose:
- To provide a positive and active male role-model for students during their school day
- To provide an extra set of eyes and ears to enhance school security.
WATCH D.O.G.S.® was founded by Jim Moore, a concerned father who chose to take action in response to a 1998 middle-school shooting in Jonesboro, AR. Joined with National Center for Fathering in 2006, WATCH D.O.G.S.® serves to inspire and equip men to be the involved fathers, grandfathers and father-figures their students need.
The benefits of the program are many, according to WATCH D.O.G.S.® National Director, Eric Snow.
- Students gain a positive male role model. Many students do not have a father-figure present in their home and these students benefit when a positive male role model is present.
- Schools gain an extra set of eyes and ears. The presence of a father or father-figure enhances a sense of security at the building for students and staff and helps create an environment conducive to learning.
- Fathers get a glimpse of their students’ everyday world and learn about the increasingly complex challenges and decisions today’s youth are facing. As a result, they can learn to relate better to their student and hopefully connect with them.
- Fathers gain a greater awareness of the positive impact they can have on their student’s life in three critical areas including: academic performance, self-esteem, social behavior.
Who are Watch D.O.G.S. (Dads Of Great Students)?
Watch D.O.G.S. are fathers, grandfathers, uncles, and other father-figures who volunteer for at least one day each year in the hallways and classrooms of Tadlock Elementary. During the day, Watch D.O.G.S. may read and work on flash cards with students, play at recess, eat lunch with students, watch the school entrances and hallways, assist with traffic flow, mentor students and perform any other assigned activities where they actively engage with not only their own students, but other students as well. On the day of their participation, Watch D.O.G.S. wear their official uniform shirt and check in at the front office. They will be given an agenda and sent on their way to start their day at Tadlock.
The WATCH D.O.G.S.® program has been recognized by the United States Department of Education and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and has been involved in the U.S. Department of Education’s P.F.I E. (Partnership For Family Involvement In Education) and the Department’s Safe School Summit. The WATCH D.O.G.S. program has received the endorsement of the National PTA organization and was asked to be a charter member of the PTA’s M.O.R.E. program (Men Organized to Raise Engagement), WATCH D.O.G.S. has been featured in the national media with a segment presented by ABC World News Tonight with Charlie Gibson and a February 2009 article in the New York Times. Also featured locally on NBC 5.