During Earth Week, fathers of John A Cumber Primary students in West Bay planted seeds of hope in children, as well as shade trees for their enjoyment.
The school PTA’s Dad’s Club purchased sapling trees and worked with school administration to identify areas where they would provide future shade to students. The plantings took place on Earth Day, 22 April on the JACPS campus.
The initiative is led by parent Ralph Williams, who heads the Dad’s Club. He said the club was established last year in response to an obvious need for fathers to take more active roles in the lives of the district’s children. The school has 524 students and there are some 30 dads in the group.
Referring to the tree-planting project, Mr. Williams said, ‘This has awakened our awareness of the need to look after the earth and to be responsible.’ He explained that all students can be involved because each tree has been assigned to a different year-group for care and husbandry.
JACPS Principal Joseph Wallace said, ‘The efforts of the Dad’s Club are particularly important, for boys are often more susceptible to negative role models. When fathers show personal interest this leads to greater bonding with their children, and usually more success in their academics.’
He added, ‘The fact that these dads are seen to be a part of the school community is already positively impacting discipline and this work should be supported in the school and home alike – with the continued support of mothers, of course.’