High school starts new chapter for dads, students

A Greenwood Community High School teacher noticed that some of his students did not get to spend a lot of time with their fathers, so he took action.

Blaine Williams started a chapter of a national organization mostly favored by elementary schools but also applicable to teens who need a positive male role model or who want to spend more time with their fathers.

Greenwood Community High School’s new chapter of All-Pro Dad had its first meeting in December and is planning at least one more this semester.

All-Pro Dad is a national initiative of Family First, based in Florida. The idea is to have monthly meetings where fathers can spend time with their children, usually over breakfast, at their school. Chapters can also use curriculum that will teach a lesson during the meeting.

The new chapter brings to eight the number of registered chapters in Johnson County. More than 1,200 chapters are meeting across the United States and in three countries.

However, All-Pro Dad meetings and chapters are usually at elementary schools. Greenwood Community Middle School and Center Grove Middle School North both have chapters.

By the time students are in high school, they typically do not want to spend time with their parents, but Williams wanted to help change that.

His two children attend Southwest Elementary School and are members of the All-Pro Dad chapter at that school. Williams wanted to recreate something similar at the high school level.

“For elementary kids it is still cool to hang out with your dad and it is still a neat thing for them to bring their dad with them to school,” Williams said.

So last summer, he started organizing with other educators to start that chapter and to have Chick-Fil-A cater breakfasts.

About 10 people attended the inaugural meeting in December.

Williams wants to get the word out that the chapter is at the high school and to get more people to attend, he said.

Organizers are still trying to decide what the chapter at Greenwood Community High School will look like, Williams said.

Curriculum that All-Pro Dads puts out is mostly geared toward younger students. And the early-morning meetings before school can be a difficult sell to high school students, as All-Pro Dad meeting times can be as early as 6:30 a.m., Williams said.

“If we are going to utilize that in our chapter, we are going to have to tweak it for a high school audience,” he said.

“We are still trying to iron that out,” he said.

Organizers hope to meet at least one more time before the school year ends, and Williams is hoping moving the meeting time to lunch and getting the word out about the chapter will help bring in more fathers and sons, he said.

No matter how old children are, they need to spend time with their fathers, Williams said.

“It is good for kids no matter what age to have time for them to sit down with their dad and just be together,” he said.

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Magen Kritsch is an editorial assistant at the Daily Journal. She can be reached at mkritsch@dailyjournal.net or 317-736-2770.