June 3, 2013
Some students at Monticello High School say their guidance counselor is a father figure, mentor and friend. In this week's Stephanie's Heroes CBS19’s Stephanie Satchell is featuring Paul Jones who students, faculty and staff say is doing more than just helping his students with their school work and giving academic advice.
It’s rare to see Paul Jones actually sitting in his office. Usually he's up and down the hallways of Monticello High School going to meet a student or in the cafeteria sitting around a table mentoring a group of teens during lunch.
“I want them to know that when there is a moment feel alone or feel like there is nothing they can do, they know at least one person has their back,” said Paul Jones, Guidance Counselor, Monticello High School.
Students say Paul Jones goes out of his way to help them before, during and after school hours.
“I go to him all the time and I'm not on his case load. He's always willing to help no matter if it's a matter of school or if it's getting you a tutor or getting you extra classes, getting your enrolled in summer school, getting you a ride home or to or from school. No matter what it is, he's always willing to help,” said Elizabeth Lainez, Student, Monticello High School.
Mr. Jones works with all students, but has a special connection to his Latino students since brushing up on his Spanish a few years ago.
“He’s been able to communicate extremely well to a lot of Latino parents because some of them may not be able to speak English or speak it as well as they may like and he makes them feel comfortable,” said Dr. Jesse Turner, Jr., Principal, Monticello High School.
In addition to speaking Spanish, Jones is well known in the Latino community of Southwood.
He often visits parents of his students at their homes if they can't make it to the school for an appointment.
The Hispanics feel really comfortable talking to him about anything thing and if he wasn't here I don't know if that would be possible,” said Keli Pedroza, Student, Monticello High School.
Students say Jones has to be one of the busiest and hardworking people at Monticello High School.
Students track him down during lunch, stop by his office and call his phone multiple times a day, but Jones doesn't mind. He says it's all a part of the job.
“I don't think that I’ve done anything special at all. I just help them or talk or get an application or whatever,” said Jones.
Students and staff say he is truly a role model and a hero.
“Honestly, he's like a second dad to me because of the way he treats us with respect and loyalty,” said David Serano, Student, Monticello High School.
“Paul never looks for any appreciation. He never looks for a pat on the back,” said Turner.
Jones says everything he does is to help his students academically and personally and he wouldn't have it any other way.