Check & Connect

“I see the kids’ faces light up when they achieve a goal, and it makes my day! It is wonderful to witness so much pride forming in the students and their school [Jefferson Elementary] due to these successes.” –Alaina Johnson, CHARISM Check & Connect Mentor

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CHARISM is so excited to partner with Jefferson Elementary School and Carl Ben Eielson Middle School to mentor students who have attendance, behavior and academic concerns. CHARISM’s Check & Connect mentor gets to hang out with each participating student throughout week, where she gets to know the students and build a trusted, friendly relationship. By learning about students’ likes, dislikes, struggles, and talents, our mentors become someone that students can trust but who is also going to hold them accountable as students.

School counselors and teachers have so many responsibilities! This is why Check & Connect is such a valuable program. Mentors help figure out how concerns can be addressed and advocate for student needs with school staff and families. Mentors also help students think for themselves how they can reduce their number of tardies or remember to do their homework, teaching them independence and accountability. Creativity is encouraged! Whether this is timing a student to see how fast they can get to their classroom once they get to school, or teaching a student how to use an alarm clock to wake up on time for school, mentors will help students, the school and families find ways to make students more successful in school.

Students learn how to set goals for themselves, how to become more independent and responsible for themselves, and that there are people at school who care about them. Check & Connect is a proven, evidence-based program that connects families and school staff to help students not only get to school on time EVERY DAY, but be excited about and successful in school!

CHARISM is in its third year of implementing this pilot program, thanks to support from the United Way of Cass-Clay. Our two years yielded significant success in reducing student tardies and absences, increasing grades and decreasing behavior reports. In the 2014-2015 school year, students absences decreased by 73% and behavior reports decreased by 54%! We can’t wait to continue to build upon students’ success this year!