McArthur High School is excited about their new club, Latinos in Action (LIA), which the Broward County School Board encouraged. The new initiative already has 34 students involved under the direction of club advisor, Jessica Santos.
Currently, LIA serves over 310 students in 110 schools throughout Utah, Idaho, Washington, Arizona, Texas, and Florida. Involved students are civically engaged young men and women who aspire to better their lives through education, leadership, professionalism, and service. These middle and high school students are paired with elementary school students as mentors and tutors, and reach more than 6,000 annually.
The leadership class/club is taught at the high school and junior high/middle school level by a highly-qualified and committed educator. LIA states, “The robust LIA curriculum trains students as paraprofessionals and leaders who visit their local elementary schools to not only increase literacy and math rates of those who are struggling, but to act as role models. This allows younger students to build leadership and self-efficacy that will propel them to join LIA when they reach Junior High and High School and continue the cycle of support and leadership demonstrated by older LIA students.”
McArthur High School club members will mentor and tutor students at Boulevard Heights and West Hollywood Elementary Schools. They plan on having a beach clean-up and a pageant at the end of the school year. Their mission is to run the club on their own and build each other as leaders with their advisor providing them the structure and opportunity to make their own decisions under her guidance.
All students are required to keep a 2.0 GPA or higher, with an overall goal to graduate college and become professionals. Most LIA students currently maintain a 3.2 GPA and many well above that average. Latinos in Action meet every other day during third and fourth periods as part of the study hall.
“Latinos In Action is a group of students empowering each other and the community to be the difference they want to see. From tutoring/mentoring younger children at local elementary schools to creating community service projects that work towards the enhancement of our environment is what we do,” says club advisor Jessica Santos. “My goal as the Latinos In Action Advisor is to help build up leaders and professionals that strive to make a huge impact on our society and that become world changers.”
The service component of the program is one of LIA’s strongest values. Students are taught the importance of “giving back”. Through their service, these students are role models and leaders in their communities. They are recognized scholars, mentors, and trail blazers setting the example for future generations of Latinos.