Started back in 2016, the Rotary Club of Gonzales funded the Early Act First Knight program at the elementary schools at Gonzales ISD. The program is a daily social/emotional learning program for students that emphasizes the development of high moral character and social skills. Now in its fourth year, Rotarians are hoping for some community support to help continue the program.
Themed around the exciting world of gallant knights and chivalry from Arthurian literature, EAFK was created by Randall Parr and is designed to be sponsored by participating rotary clubs from all over the country and their community partners.
EAFK helps young students adopt excellent personal qualities that have proven to reduce disciplinary referrals and bullying as well as reclaimed classroom time.
About every four weeks, teachers choose one student from their classroom who has earned the distinction of being awarded a medal and certificate for best exhibiting the virtue just studied. An assembly program is held where students are “knighted” by a knight in full armor. It is a surprise to the student who is receiving a medal. Family members are invited to attend this special ceremony and family members show up from parents to grandparents and siblings, it is an awesome day to celebrate the child.
“I’ve witnessed several knighting ceremonies and I’ve not left one with dry eyes,” Rotary President Kelly Lindner said. “To see family members surprise recipients who are themselves surprised by the decision of teacher and students is extraordinary.”
EAFK has helped young students by proving to reduce disciplinary referrals and bullying as well as reclaimed classroom teaching time. This translates to improved academic performance as well as a better learning environment.
Support is needed for the service club to continue to put on the EAFK program. Rotarians are asking parents of students who have been knighted, or anyone else in the community to help support the program by donating. For more information, contact Lindner at firstname.lastname@example.org. For photos of previous ceremonies, search for Rotary Club Gonzales, TX on Facebook.