Folsom Elementary Starts Dad’s Program
FARMINGTON — Folsom Elementary in Farmington is the first school in Northwest Arkansas to start a program called All Pro Dad’s Day that encourages dads and father figures to spend time with their children at school on a monthly basis.
Alex Floyd and Nick Southerland are serving as co-chairmen for Folsom’s program and they hope to see attendance grow each month. Another goal is to see it spread to other schools in Farmington and throughout the region.
Floyd works in Springdale and saw the program as an opportunity to get plugged into the community and plugged into the school.
Floyd said All Pro Dad’s Day was started by Tony Dungy, a former player and coach in the National Football League.
Dungy, on the All Pro Dad’s Day website, states the day is “a simple way for you to become an uncommon father and influence your children in significant ways.”
The website shows what can happen if a dad is not actively involve in his child’s life. The child is two times more likely to fail or drop out of school, 54 percent poorer than the parents, seven times more likely to experience teen pregnancy and is at higher risk for incarceration.
Karla Long, Folsom counselor, heard about All Pro Dad’s Day at the National Counselors Conference in Colorado last summer and decided she wanted to bring it to her school.
“I just believe the parent communication is a key component to a student’s success,” Long said. “If we can get dads together and working with the school, it is a win-win situation.”
Kids and their dads or other father figures will meet for breakfast monthly in the P.E. gym at Folsom. The next one will be 7-8 a.m. Friday, March 9. Uncles, cousins, grandfathers, others involved with a child can attend the breakfast in place of an absent dad. Women also can attend, though the program is geared more toward fathers.
Each breakfast has a theme with an accompanying video but opens with the same activity, Floyd said. Dads are encouraged to tell their child or children why they are proud of them.
The theme for the February breakfast was “influence” and a video from a Disney movie showed how the fish Nemo was persistent and able to influence others.
Floyd talked to the children about how they can influence other kids around them and talked to dads about how they influence their children.
Dane Peacock attended the February All Pro Dad’s Day with his son Miles Peacock, 7. The family is new to Farmington and Peacock said he saw it as a way to grow closer with his son and to meet others.
“It’s a great idea to help fathers and sons connect,” Peacock said.
Miles said he likes to play golf and wrestle with his dad.
Bob Archer also attended with his son, Harlin Archer, 7. Archer said he saw a flyer about the program and liked the idea.
“It seems like it will help fathers and kids and I’d like to get to know the other fathers,” Archer said.
Harlin said eating breakfast with his dad has been fun. He likes to play the videogame Mario Brothers with his dad.
Dane Peacock and his son, Miles, 7, visit with each other during the All Pro Dad’s Day at Folsom Elementary School in Farmington. The next one will be Friday morning.