WATCH D.O.G.S. (Dads Of Great Students) is an innovative father involvement, educational initiative of the National Center For Fathering. There are two primary goals of the WATCH D.O.G.S. program:
To provide positive male role models for the students, demonstrating by their presence that education is important.
To provide extra sets of eyes and ears to enhance school security and reduce bullying.
Who Are WatchDOGS?
WatchDOGS are fathers, grandfathers, uncles, and other father-figures who volunteer for at least one day each year at an official WATCH D.O.G.S. school. During the day, WatchDOGS 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 and any other assigned activities where they actively engage with not only their own students, but other students as well. Many school principals have reported that the mere presence of a WatchDOG dramatically reduces reports of bullying. On the day of their participation, WatchDOGS are given a brief review of their involvement and they wear an official WATCH D.O.G.S. t-shirt with a disposable ‘Dog Tag’ identifying them as WATCHDOGS.
Students gain positive male role models.
Schools gain an extra set of eyes and ears. The presence of a father or father figure will provide an additional deterrent to bullying, enhance a sense of security in the building, and will help to 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.
Due to budget shortfalls and cutbacks, often teachers are presented with larger classrooms each year. Fathers and father figures (aka WatchDOGS) provide real and important help for the teachers and the students.
How WATCH D.O.G.S. Works
WATCH D.O.G.S., a K-12 program, invites fathers, grandfathers, uncles, or other father figures to volunteer at least one full day at their child’s/student’s school during the school year. Individuals sign up at a WatchDOG Kick-off Meeting or in the office at any time throughout the school year. The program is overseen by a “Top Dog” volunteer who partners with the school administrator to coordinate scheduling and identify opportunities for WatchDOGS to provide assistance at the school. WatchDOGS volunteers perform a variety of tasks during their volunteer day including monitoring the school entrance, assisting with unloading and loading of buses and cars, monitoring the lunch room, or helping in the classroom with a teacher’s guidance by working with small groups of students on homework, flashcards, or spelling.
If you are curious about what your day might look as a WatchDOG, check out our Monday-Thursday or Friday Schedule.
How To Become a WATCH DOG
STEP 1: Submit Lake Stevens School District Volunteer Application
All Watch D.O.G.S. must have a current background check on file. Lake Stevens School District uses the Safe Visitor Solutions system. To obtain a background check click the link below and follow the easy steps.
You will then receive an email with your approval status. Volunteer applications are valid for two years from the approval date, and you will receive an email alert when it expires.
STEP 2: Attend Hillcrest’s Watch Dog Kick-off Meeting on Wednesday, October 16 at 6pm in the Hillcrest Gym.
STEP 3: After your Lake Stevens School District volunteer application has been approved, sign up online to schedule your WATCHDOG day. Go to: https://signup.com/go/zfeZuSw
STEP 4: As a WatchDOG you are required to wear a WatchDOG shirt to be easily identified by students and staff. If you do not already have one, please visit the WatchDOG Store and choose from a large selection of shirts to order. Thank you for helping the Hillcrest WatchDOGS program!
If you have any further questions, please contact our Watch Dog PTA Chairperson – Joy Smith.