The choices we make dictate the lives we lead; The motto for Bishop Hall Charter School has stuck with students for years to come. Bishop Hall Charter School is a non-traditional charter school created in 1999. The school’s smaller class environment provides adolescents who struggle in a regular school setting a space to succeed. “Bishop Hall is an amazing school that addresses the need of each student individually and differently. It allows students to experience learning at every level. Mostly, Bishop Hall is a community that works to produce productive citizens that understands the value of giving back or the significance of helping your fellow man,” Dr. Verna Wiggins exclaimed.
On Fridays, the school dedicates time to help serve the community. There are multiple groups available for the enrolled students to participate in. Some groups assist in local cleanups, helping smaller children that need assistance with learning, and a few more.
“Creating a program for community service was my idea. We, as a staff, decided to schedule half days on Fridays and make Fridays a club day. Students Taking Education Positively (STEP) was the first and only group [at the time] that served at various schools on Fridays and students were awarded for community service hours for many years”, states Dr. Verna Wiggins.
In this program, students realize how valuable their time is and learn ways to use their time to impact the community. Dr. Wiggins says, “In my opinion, all students that participate in Friday groups were impacted emotionally, academically, and physically [that I see in the STEP program]. Through the years, I have watched students that withdrew, had poor self-esteem, and a lack of motivation soar in every aspect holistically.”
The future of Bishop Hall Charter School is full of helping students that want to succeed. Dr. Wiggins exclaims for the future of Bishop Hall, “[I hope to see] a continuation of students giving back to their community and learning skills that are required to be successful in the workforce and life itself. There continue to be so many acts of kindness displayed among these young people.
They have used their funds to contribute to a classroom party or to purchase Christmas gifts. They have donated can goods for various food drives. They take the time to read to smaller children. They visit the elderly in the nursing home, and they volunteer to assist the food bank in Thomasville once or twice a month”. Bishop Hall’s work with the students leaves an impact after high school as life lessons on taking the initiative to helping others will last a lifetime.
Time is the most valuable kindness you can give a human being. The time invested in listening, giving, donating, cleaning, speaking, and being there for others, no matter who they are, can impact someone’s day or even their lives, We must help each other, understand each other, and serve each other.