Watch D.O.G.S. is a national school-based program aimed at incorporating more positive male role models in school environments. The volunteer program invites father figures to sign up for campus visits to help students and ensure uniform security coverage of CCISD elementary schools, which have patrolling school liaison officers. Watch D.O.G.S. participants are not armed.
“It doesn’t take a tragedy for the district to think of the safety of our students; that’s first and foremost,” CCISD board of trustees President Jay Cunningham said.
At CCISD, Watch D.O.G.S. is organized by each school’s parent-teacher association, not the district, and therefore not all of CCISD’s 27 elementary schools feature the program as not every school has its own PTA, said Jonathan Cottrell, board trustee and Watch D.O.G.S. participant.
Cunningham said the challenge for CCISD will be extending the Watch D.O.G.S. program to more elementary schools and beyond to the intermediate and high school level. He said the size of the district causes different levels of PTA participation at different schools, where some PTAs can struggle with membership numbers.
Watch D.O.G.S. has been on hiatus since the 2020-21 school year due to COVID-19.
“There was a dire need for us as parents to be on campus with our kids,” Cottrell said. “So as soon as green lights were coming on, in bits and pieces, the dads were saying, ‘When can we get in there?’”