Greenbrier Middle to provide mentors

Greenbrier Middle School graduation coach Dolly Morris was working in her office recently when a pupil came up behind her.

"He said, 'Coach Dolly, I need a mentor,' " she recalled Thursday.

Ms. Morris and Columbia County sheriff's Deputy Leslie Wilkie are trying to oblige.

They launched a mentoring program that pairs community volunteers with pupils at risk of dropping out.

Ms. Morris said about 15 pupils initially will be involved in the program, and 10 mentors have volunteered through the sheriff's office auxiliary division or other community organizations.

"The ultimate goal would be to have every child in this school have a mentor because we're all at risk in one way or another," she said.

Reach Betsy Gilliland at (706) 868-1222, ext. 113, or betsy.gilliland@augustachronicle.com.

GETTING INVOLVED

Residents who would like to undergo training for a joint mentoring program between Greenbrier Middle School and the Columbia County Sheriff's Office auxiliary division for at-risk pupils can get involved in one of two ways. They can contact Deputy Leslie Wilkie at (706) 541-3977 to sign up for the upcoming Citizens Law Enforcement Academy. The 10-week program, which is held Thursday evenings, will begin March 6. Six slots are still available. The next academy will be offered in the fall. Volunteers must complete this program before they can undergo mentoring training.

Greenbrier Middle School graduation coach Dolly Morris also can speak to civic organizations about the program. She can be reached at (706) 650-6080 .


AT-RISK PUPILS

Graduation coaches use four factors determined by the state to identify pupils who are at risk of failing to graduate from high school on time:

- Class grades

- Standardized test performance

- Attendance

- Behavior

Source: Greenbrier Middle School graduation coach Dolly Morris