A new program has developed support, hope, and success for at risk students.

Success for At Risk StudentsAt Belmonte Middle School, the new program called Next Steps for Success has resulted in some dramatic change around for some students. “I didn’t care,” said seventh grader Kevin Parada. “I was disrespectful. I was awful. I was mean. I used to wake up with just hatred. It got me in a lot of trouble.” Today, Parada is expected to pass and next year he hopes to make the honor roll.

Next Steps for Success was launched by guidance counselor Maureen Lueke, teacher Sophia Hennessey and a team of 11 volunteer educators. Hennessey says that the five students chosen for the program are the most needy in the school.

“They are either the quiet ones that slide under the radar because they’re sad, depressed or lost, or they have behavioral problems and they’re in your face,” Hennessey said. “That behavior is masking serious issues that they’re dealing with.”

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