Lincoln Elementary adopts a nationwide program known as "WATCH D.O.G.S."
Fathers and father-figures were invited to a pizza and fun event with their kids to hear more about the program.
The "Top-Dog Coordinator" is a UNK student currently working as a student teacher at Lincoln Elementary in Hastings. Jenae Meyer and school staff said they were overwhelmed with the turn out. More than 100 fathers, step-fathers, grandfathers, uncles, and older brothers showed interest in the mentoring program.
D.O.G.S. stands for Dads of Great Students. WATCH D.O.G.S. was created in 1998 at George Elementary in Springdale, Ark., and it's now found in the more than 2,400 schools nationwide.
Lincoln Elementary in Hastings is the 10th school in the state to adopt the program, but the first in the Tri-City area.
Speaking at the event, WATCH D.O.G.S. dad Ron Meyer said, "If they don't have a dad around at home, they can count on one being here at school knowing it's safe."
Student teacher Jenae Meyer said she wanted to implement the program because one third of the students at Lincoln Elementary don't have a father figure at home.
"I want so much for the students here at Lincoln to have that person they really can trust and rely on and they can look up too, simply as a watch dog playing catch with them at recess and teaching them fractions; it can help them in so many different ways," Meyer said.
Meyer hopes the program will expand throughout the school district and the Tri-Cities.
Lincoln Elementary will officially start the program in January 2013.