Hello and welcome to the official website of G.O.A.L.S (Girls’ Optimal Academic Learning Society) which is currently exclusive to Oak Grove Middle School in Concord, CA. Each week, we will be posting blogs to track our progress and publicize our activities. However, this first blog will be a general recap and overview of our program. As noted in the “Our Story” section of our website.
G.O.A.L.S was founded with the intention to optimize education and the school environment for middle school girls by providing a safe space for both academic purposes as well as discussing relevant, personal issues. For the first few weeks, we have taken a look at various themes, the most notable being: advocation, leadership, women representation in politics, bullying, and so forth. As our program has grown from the initial 3 girls to 15-20 each week, we have increasingly been able to play group activities and build a “sisterhood.” In addition, we provide journals and thought-provoking prompts for the girls to complete that relate to the theme at hand. However, this club is not solely a serious environment for we ensure each week is a fun meeting! As one of our girls said, “Each week I look forward to Tuesday’s [because of G.O.A.L.S].”
This club has also taken a community service direction, but to the girls’ discretion (not the leaders). We have seen growing interest in helping out in the community from the girls themselves and in 2017 we plan to take steps in that direction. The girls remind us each meeting how much they enjoy this program and also notify us when they would like a change or a repeat of certain activities; it is clear that our wonderful members run the program. None of this would be plausible without the immense help of the Oak Grove administration, but more specifically Ms. Sechrist and Ms. Filios, as well as the PTA. Without their support, we would have been unable to pursue or even establish G.O.A.L.S. Our hope is to pass on leadership to our current members so when we (the mentors) depart for college, they will be able to carry on the program. This club is simply an embryonic structure, but the future ahead looks successful and prosperous.