Community Gem: Dormetria Thompson empowers kids at after school programs

Dormetria Thompson (center) and other community members cheer as students arrive for class at Fairview Elementary School.
Dormetria Thompson (center) and other community members cheer as students arrive for class at Fairview Elementary School.

Credit: Submitted

Credit: Submitted

DAYTON — As director of the Scholars of HOPE program, Dormetria Thompson gives young kids in Dayton the resources — and inspiration — to succeed.

Thompson organizes monthly “clap-ins” for kids one Monday each month during school. Community leaders and volunteers – police, firefighters, elected officials, sororities and fraternities – line the entrance to the school and cheer as the kids arrive.

“For me it was quite emotional to see that in action, to see the smiles on the faces of the children, to see them dancing and walking into the classroom. It’ a great stat to the day,” Carter said of taking part.

Thompson was nominated as a Dayton Daily News Community Gem by Nicole Carter.

“Dormetria is a phenomenal educator and supporter of young people in the community,” Carter said. “She is empowering students.”

Scholars of HOPE is provided by Omega Community Development Corporation in partnership with Dayton Schools. It is the after school and summer program for K-8 students at Fairview Elementary and Edwin Joel Brown Middle School.

“I don’t do what I do for recognition, and at the same time the work is really hard and it’s nice to be acknowledged,” Thompson said of being nominated.

Thompson helped establish Scholars of HOPE. During the school year, they provide wrap-around services like reading coaches and socio-emotional programs after school. This summer they are offering the Camp HOPE summer program for 115 kids.

“Every child deserves equity, and a high-quality public school experience,” she said.

Thompson said the goal is to celebrate the kids. And it has an impact. She said the principal has noted a decrease in behavioral issues on those Mondays.

“Most people just need a little encouragement,” Thompson said.