WATCH D.O.G.S.® (Dads Of Great Students) is an innovative program of the National Center for Fathering focusing on improving education in our nation’s schools by using the positive influence of fathers and father-figures to provide a positive and active male role-model for students during their school day, and to provide an extra set of eyes and ears to enhance school security.
WATCH D.O.G.S.® was founded by Jim Moore, a concerned father who chose to take action in response to a 1998 middle-school shooting in Jonesboro, AR. Joined with the National Center for Fathering in 2006, WATCH D.O.G.S.® serves to inspire and equip men to be the involved fathers, grandfathers, and father-figures their students need.
The benefits of the program are many, according to WATCH D.O.G.S.® National Director, Eric Snow.
- Students gain a positive male role model. Many students do not have a father-figure present in their home and these students benefit when a positive male role model is present.
- Schools gain an extra set of eyes and ears. The presence of a father or father-figure enhances a sense of security at the building for students and staff and helps 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.
Who are WatchDOGS (Dads Of Great Students)?
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. 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, mentor students, and any other assigned activities where they actively engage with not only their own students but other students as well.
The WATCH D.O.G.S.® program has been recognized by the United States Department of Education and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The WATCH D.O.G.S. program has received the endorsement of the National PTA organization and has been recognized as a program that “can be a great tool in our efforts to prevent school violence and improve student performance because it can increase parental initiative and involvement in their children’s education.” (Congressional Record, February 7, 2000 page S392)
WATCH D.O.G.S.® strives to:
- Raise the banner of positive fathering through the forum of schools across America and the world.
- Awaken fathers to the values and benefits of committed fathering.
- Change culture by where every student has a father or father-figure to connect within a positive way at school.
- Help every school in America be positively impacted by the committed involvement of fathers and father-figures in their student's life.