KINGSTON — Feeling comfortable in one’s setting is a necessity for students’ overall success in their learning environment.
With this in mind, staff at Kingston Junior High School wants to make sure incoming sixth graders feel welcome when they come through their doors as middle schoolers in September.
Advisors at KJH are currently in the process of implementing a unique program known as WEB, which aims to ease the transition of elementary students into the middle school when Kingston Junior High becomes Kingston Middle School this fall. WEB — or Where Everybody Belongs — aims to bridge the gap between students by utilizing eight graders as liaisons to the incoming class.
“The concept is to help elementary students transition to the middle school level,” said WEB advisor Su-A Kim. “It’s essentially a big brother, big sister program connecting students together.”
Kim, along with fellow WEB advisors Toby Kemper, Doug Segur and Tawnee Weisgarber, said that they are excited about getting the program up and running.
“The program will have kids leading kids. They will be the ones participating in the program,” Kim said. “It gives power to our students and will help create a great atmosphere. Everyone will get to know each other.”
When sixth graders arrive on the first day of school, they will already know an older student who can help them get acclimated to life as a middle schooler. Kim said the school is estimated to have 268 sixth graders when it becomes Kingston Middle School.
“When sixth graders arrive at school they will already know somebody older than them,” Kim said. “A few days before school begins we’re planning for the WEB leaders to meet with the sixth grade students they will be mentoring.”
While it is still in the planning stages, each WEB leader is expected to be responsible for mentoring four sixth grade students. Especially at the beginning of the school year.
“They will meet with them face to face in the morning and the afternoon to touch base with them when the program first begins,” Kim said. “After awhile they will meet with students once every three days.”
Kim said WEB leaders will also participate in school projects with sixth graders at least once a month.
Currently, a bevy of seventh graders wishing to become liaisons as eighth graders are going through a screening process for the 68 positions available.
“The students selected are going to be a cross section of the school and will represent it in a positive way,” Kim said. “They will be positive role models.”