Junior High Principal Dave Welter Honored
Iowa Junior High School Principal Honored in Nation’s Capital as a
Powerful and Effective Champion for Afterschool and Youth
Educators, Parents, Afterschool Leaders Come Together to
Urge Congress to Increase Funding for Afterschool Programs
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Afterschool Alliance today honored Dave Welter, Principal of Holmes Junior High School in Cedar Falls, for his support for afterschool programs. Welter was named a State Afterschool Champion at the “Breakfast of Champions,” a gala event in Washington, D.C. featuring Members of Congress and national afterschool champions. Welter has been a leader in ensuring access to afterschool programs for low-income children. He was one of 18 state champions from around the country honored at the Breakfast for supporting and working on behalf of afterschool programs and the children and families who benefit from quality programs. The Iowa Afterschool Alliance nominated him for the honor.
Welter is a staunch advocate for afterschool for all children. He has ensured that students at Holmes Junior High School have afterschool programs, arguing that, at the middle school level, all students can be considered “at risk” because of the nature of that developmental phase. Welter also co-hosted the Expanded Learning Forum for the Iowa Afterschool Alliance this past summer. The Forum brought together policy leaders, advocates, and educators to determine state-level goals for improving student achievement through out-of-school time. Mr. Welter’s afterschool program has long been a model of engaging older youth in skill-building activities outside of the classroom and was highlighted throughout the event.
“Where would we be without the focus and dedication of Dave Welter?” said Michelle Rich, Network Coordinator of the Iowa Afterschool Alliance. “Not only has his work directly benefitted children across the state, but he has also helped the Iowa Afterschool Alliance be a stronger voice in shaping policy decisions.”
The “Breakfast of Champions” is part of the 12th annual Afterschool for All Challenge, sponsored by the Afterschool Alliance, which brings together hundreds of educators, parents, afterschool leaders and advocates from around the country for a series of events and meetings with Members of Congress. Following the Breakfast, participants fanned out across Capitol Hill to talk to their senators and representatives about the importance of afterschool programs to children, families and communities. This year, the Alliance is also encouraging advocates for afterschool to participate in the Challenge at home by calling or visiting Congressional district offices to urge their representatives in Congress to increase funding for the 21st Century Community Learning Centers and the Child Care Development Fund.
“There’s no question that afterschool programs are a lifeline for working parents, give our children and youth a safe place to be and inspire academic and social/emotional learning,” said Afterschool Alliance Executive Director Jodi Grant. “But they also do much more. They expose kids to possible careers in the sciences or the arts, teach them the value of community service, and provide them with mentors, meals, physical activity and so much more. The people we honor as champions today are helping to educate, support and guide the young people who will be our future leaders.”
The full list of State Champions being honored at the Afterschool for All Challenge is:
• Arkansas: Tammie Cloyes, 21st CCLC Program Coordinator, Department of Education
• California: Michael Funk, Director of the After School Division, Department of Education
• Florida: Modesto Abety-Gutierrez, President and CEO, The Children’s Trust
• Georgia: N. Jean Walker Ph.D., Vice President of Education, United Way of Greater Atlanta
• Iowa: Dave Welter, Principal, Holmes Junior High School
• Indiana: Willis Bright, Former Director of Youth Programs, Lilly Endowment
• Kansas: Laura Kaiser, Family Engagement Chair, Kansas Parent Teacher Association
• Massachusetts: The HonorableThomas McGee, Massachusetts State Senate
• North Carolina: Carr Thompson, Senior Program Officer, Burroughs Wellcome Fund
• Nebraska: Kristin Williams, Director of Community Initiatives, The Sherwood Foundation
• New Jersey: The Honorable Connie Wagner, New Jersey General Assembly
• New Mexico: Laurie Mueller, Former 21st CCLC State Coordinator, Department of Education
• Oklahoma: General Ben Robinson USAF (Ret.), President, Sentry One LLC
• Pennsylvania: Leslie Roesler, Associate Director, Pennsylvania Key – Berks County Intermediate Unit
• Rhode Island: The Honorable Frank Ferri, Rhode Island House of Representatives
• Texas: Jennifer Esterline, Independent Nonprofit Consultant
• Virginia: Kathryn Johnson, Executive Director, Alternatives, Inc.
• West Virginia: Gayle Manchin, Vice President, State Board of Education.
In addition to the 18 State Champions, the Afterschool Alliance honored John Galvin, Assistant Principal of New York’s I.S. 318 in Brooklyn, as a national Afterschool Champion at the Breakfast. A veteran educator who has devoted 17 years to the students of I.S. 318, Galvin is also a coach for the school’s afterschool chess program. The school’s chess team has won more national championships than any other junior high chess team in the nation and is the subject of the recent, critically acclaimed documentary “Brooklyn Castle.”
The 2013 Afterschool for All Challenge is generously sponsored by: United States Tennis Association, United States Chess Federation, the NAMM Foundation, Cable in the Classroom and the National AfterSchool Association. Additional generous support is provided by Torani Syrups, the Noyce Foundation and the C.S. Mott Foundation.