Sir Francis Bacon is quoted saying, “Knowledge itself is power.”
For students struggling to learn in Jackson County, this statement can be a heavy weight to carry.
Hoping to help students find their power through knowledge, Southwestern Youth Services is beginning a tutoring program for students in the community.
For now, this service is available for any child who needs help in English and reading.
Michelle Lewis, coordinator of Tutoring and Education-based Services, has taught at Cameron University and currently teaches at Western Oklahoma State College. Her focus is on English fundamentals, grammar, composition and reading assistance. Lewis and other well-established teaching professionals in the community are eager to help students with one-on-one instruction and support.
“I started in August,” Lewis said, “And it’s already looking like we’ll need to expand.”
Jeanne Brandon, executive director, brought in Lewis knowing she had a desire to help the children of Jackson County in an atmosphere that fosters learning.
The two have had support from community members already willing to offer tutoring services and support for the pilot program. In the future, they hope to bring in math and history professionals to assist students in those areas, as well.
“This is an excellent program,” Brandon said. “Helping a child succeed in the classroom helps them succeed outside of it. They have more confidence and a happier attitude.”
Though Southwestern Youth Services is hard to find, Lewis and Brandon believe that will help students feel more comfortable seeking tutoring.
“No one knows why they’re walking into the NBC Building,” Brandon said. “And I think that helps them to not be self-conscious.”
The two went on to say that most students need help at one time or another in their years of education, but most do not know where to go to get that help. They hope to offer that help to the many students who need assistance in Jackson County.
Southwestern Youth Services is a local organization focused on providing counseling services, prevention services through community education, foster care, and emergency solutions. Tutoring is one of many services offered through the organization.
For more information, contact Lewis at 580-482-2809.
Reach Katrina Goforth at 580-482-1221, ext. 2077.