The Check and Connect Program

We no doubt would be closer to utopia if we could address low participation and high dropout rates that have been plaguing our school system. My research looks to address this problem. Developed at the University of Minnesota, the Check and Connect Program is a comprehensive student engagement intervention designed to build and maintain personal and trusting relationships. Student levels of engagement (expressed in attendance, grades, and behavior) are “checked” regularly by mentors and used to guide their efforts to increase students’ “connection” with school. I investigated how the Check and Connect program was implemented as a mentor at a local elementary school. My role consisted of weekly check-ins with students who were demonstrating signs of disengagement with school. I would work individually with these students concerning the completion of assignments and we would discuss any social/emotional issues they were concerned with. Throughout the school year, it became evident that the program was successful. The students with whom I worked demonstrated an enthusiasm for learning, high levels of engagement, and a measurable increase in completion of assignments. I hope to share the results of this research at the MEHA conference, and I thank you for your time and consideration.