Plans to Launch Rec Center for MHS Students Needs Student Voice

I am so happy that we are moving forward with a plan  to set up and operate a  Teen Rec Center on the second floor and the grounds of the Perley School. I have been wanting to do this since we built the new Penn Brook School and now it appears that it is coming to fruition! There has been a need for teens in Georgetown to have a place to gather for years but for many reasons we did not have the resources such as space and staffing  to move this vision.  Happily, now we have a group of excited people from the various youth organizations in town who all think this is a good idea and are ready to put their time and some resources behind this venture to hopefully have a soft opening  for students in grades 7-12 some time this fall.

The  Last Attitudes and Behavior Survey , that was administered to students in grades 6-12  last year ,revealed that the youth in Georgetown would like a place to gather with friends to engage in healthy activities and have fun. This project is one way the community can work together to build positive assets in our kids. We are lucky that we have some good models in other towns and recently I had the opportunity to visit the Teen Center in Newburyport where they have an active program. They were very gracious about sharing their ideas with us about how they got started , set up the space and developed  the various programs they offer. Just like our Maker Spaces, they relied heavily on donations from members of the community which we will also be seeking once we have a list of what we need.  We will be sending  out a sign up genius at some time in the early fall  and would appreciate any help you can provide.

Here is how you can help right now!  We are looking for students in grades 7-12 to help us design the center. We all know that it does no good for the adults to create a space that the students are not interested in going to so we would like to  hold focus groups with as many young people as are interested in coming to help us make some important decisions. We want this space to belong to the kids and therefore we need to hear their voices. We are tentatively planning to meet on August 21 and/or 22nd at the Perley School at 6:30 PM.  Pizza and drinks will be served to those who attend. We are trying to get this word out on various social media outlets such as Facebook, Instagram, Snap Chat and others I probably don’t even know about.  We would like to know how many students to expect so watch out for a sign up message that will be circulating on social media or of course you or your child can drop me a note.

The young people who come are not committing to anything but just helping us know what they would like the center to include so we can move forward in getting the resources in place to provide them with a cool space to gather and have fun with their friends. Thanks for spreading the word! If you know someone who has ideas but might not be able to attend a meeting, let them know I am happy to meet with them or they can drop me a note at jacobsc@georgetown.k12.ma.us or by calling me at 978-352-5777 ext. 140. We want to hear from as many voices as possible so share widely.

I appreciate your help!