John lies. At home and at school. It keeps getting worse. He doesn’t read well. He’s slow to finish assignments. He’s frustrated, acts out and gets in trouble. None of the other second-graders like to play with him. Another day of drudgery at school. John hates school. Another stupid assembly. But wait. There’s horses, knights…wait…”is this my school?” John thinks to himself. The music soars, the horse rears and the knight salutes John and his classmates with sword thrust high into the air. The school roars its approval. Sir Cass descends his horse and addresses the students talking of respect, perseverance and honesty. Thereafter, every morning John and his classmates repeat the Four Way Test of the things they think, say or do. First - Is it the truth? Second – Is it fair to all concerned? Third – Will it build goodwill and better friendships? and Fourth – Will it be beneficial to all concerned? Each day John’s class spends 10 minutes learning about honesty. John remembers what Sir Cass said and wants to be honest. He works hard. His teacher notices. He actually starts looking forward to school.
Fast forward six weeks. Trumpets sound the arrival of Sir Cass! Students cheer his welcome. Sir Cass announces his return for the knighting of select students, students who have exemplified the qualities of a knight. The students wiggle with excitement as Sir Cass announces names of students, with each their special accolade. Then John hears his name! It can’t be. Me?! He looks at his teacher who waves him forward. In shock he rises to join the other students with Sir Cass on stage. Once onstage his mom suddenly appears beside him. The great Knight soars above John and in his deep voice commands him to kneel. Sir Cass hangs around John’s neck the largest gold medallion he has ever seen. The Knight proclaims to John, his mom, his teacher and all the students assembled that John is now a Squire of Knights of the Guild best exhibiting the trait of “honesty”. Sir Cass announces that John and the others honored are now and forever members of the Gallery of Champions! The entire student body cheers the honorees. It’s a day John will not forget.
Stories just like John’s are told by the Principals at Mitchell and Williams Elementary Schools. EarlyAct FirstKnight is a program brought to Georgetown by the Rotary Club of Georgetown. First at Mitchell, then expanding to Williams and this year, Ford Elementary. EarlyAct FirstKnight is one of many projects funded locally by the Rotary Club of Georgetown, over 100 Georgetown business people working for the good of the community just like you. Our Rotarians donate and every net dollar raised goes to charity here and around the world. Whether it is high school scholarships, a celebration night for GISD mentors and mentees, building ramps for the homebound poor, purchasing a bus for Brookwood In Georgetown (B.I.G.), or knighting our youngsters, your contribution makes a difference in this community.
Please join us in changing lives in this community and around the world. Hope to see you there.
Rotary Club of Georgetown