Somerset Primary School is always looking for ways to improve and enhance student learning and behaviour.
In June of 2004, the Principal, Mrs. Richardson challenged the staff to put extra support in place for students. This challenge was accepted and implemented in September 2004. The entire staff including our Administrative Assistant and now the custodians, too, enthusiastically agreed to take students “under their wings” to give any support and encouragement necessary. The staff seeing the impact this could have on all students wholeheartedly agreed that this shall be extended to all students at Somerset Primary. Students and teachers were grouped based on already established relationships and/or randomly picked names. Parents were introduced to the concept at our first PTA meeting that September.
We brainstormed at a Team Meeting on activities that could be done, with the understanding that spending time with students, not material things, must be of primary importance. The response from students was overwhelming. They were overjoyed to meet and know their C.H.E.C.K.mates. The acronym C.H.E.C.K.mate means —
Communication, Humour, Encouragement, Cooperation for Kids.
This program has had a positive impact on teachers, parents and students. Meaningful relationships have been established. Students and teachers search out each other to celebrate successes and address concerns. During activities students are assured of a C.H.E.C.K.mate who cheers especially for him/her.
It’s a delight to see C.H.E.C.K.mates interacting during break times, having lunch together, chatting, visiting the farm or beach, meeting and greeting others with a sense of purpose. Teachers and students get excited. One can often hear both teacher and students say “That’s my C.H.E.C.K.mate.”
We are enthused that all members of staff, teachers and support staff, are involved in this programme.