Written by Vicki Viall
The monthly meeting of the Wolf Point Indian Education Committee/Johnson O’Malley meeting was held Monday, Feb. 3. This meeting also includes a Title VII meeting.
As part of the Title VII meeting, a presentation from Cheryl Taylor who serves as the Northside Elementary School home/ school coordinator was given. Though not included in her title, she also works with students from both Southside and Wolf Point High School. She shared some statistics from her school year thus far. Not only is she available to ensure students get to school, she also ensures they get home, have someone they feel they can talk to, mentor and contact parents — and that just scratches the surface.
In her free time, she assists at Northside School whenever and wherever she is needed.
The meeting then moved on to the Wolf Point Indian Education Committee. After the approval of the agenda, secretary Chelly Harada read the minutes from the January meeting.
In new business, the topic of why youth are leaving school was brought up. During the conversation, it was shared that students are losing interest in school at a very young age.
Digging deeper, it was suggested that, perhaps, these students are being intimidated by possible “gang” members harassing them before or after school. The possibility that they fear going to school because they must endure this while going to or leaving school.
Wolf Point School superintendent Joe Paine was asked about hiring an additional counselor whose primary responsibility would be to deal with these issues and be available for students to seek out when confronted by someone who may be a threat to them. He shared why the school district is unable to hire an additional counselor but offered suggestions for the committee to further explore at the March meeting. Additionally, he offered suggestions on contacts to be made prior to that meeting.
The last item to be discussed was which members of the committee will be attending the National Johnson-O’Malley Association Conference in March to be held in Denver, Colo. A motion to accept the names offered was approved.
All those suggested must let the committee know they will definitely be attending by the March meeting.
The next meeting date was set for March 3.