MPS Promotes Study Buddy Program

Statistics show that young people who have mentors are likely to do better in school. From that came the idea of the Study Buddy Program.

According to Meridian High School principal Victor Hubbard, the first semester of this new program is already bringing results.

"I've seen much improvement," said Hubbard. "Particularly we had a student in grade 9, one of our board members was the student's study buddy. And she came in and had lunch with her and I have seen a great change in the student's academics, as well as the student's behavior. "

Jarmisha Hampton is just one student who is benefiting from a study buddy.

"Ms. Elaine, she helped me with my reading," said Jarmisha Hampton, who is in fourth grade at West Hills Elementary School. "At first I didn't like reading. Now she's got me reading chapter books; she helps me a lot with reading."

Michael Van Veckhoven, general manager of New South Ford-Nissan, is the Study Buddy Program coordinator. He says not only does the student benefit from their study buddy, but the study buddy also receives great rewards.

"It's amazing, sitting there with a child and seeing the joy of learning in his eyes, when he's learning new things," said Van Veckhoven.

Classrooms stand empty right now while students are enjoying their summer break. But Van Veckhoven says that it is the perfect time right now to volunteer to be a study buddy.

"We have 12 study buddies right now," said Van Veckhoven. "We have 12 volunteers. There are many, many more kids than that who need help with their grades."

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