ROUND ROCK, Texas (KXAN) - As the school year gets under way, schools in Williamson County are in desperate need of mentors at all grade levels.
Right now hundreds of students are on a waiting list.
At Forest North Elementary School in North Austin – 50 mentors come in once a week during the lunch hour to work with students.
Emily Melberg is going on her second year as a mentor.
"It's the highlight of my week getting to see her," said Melberg.
That's because she gets to mentor Jasmyn.
"We work on reading, math, we do games, we talk about what is going on in her life," said Melberg.
Turns out the fifth grader's counselor suggested she get a mentor.
"My last report card wasn't very good and my dad was like we are going to try harder," said Jasmyn Trego, 5th grader, Forest North Elementary School.
And that's exactly what she has done with Emily.
"She helps me pronounce the words I can't say and helps me spell," said Trego.
And the mentoring turned into results because at the end of last year.
"My last report card was almost all A's," said Trego.
But the district needs more mentors to make this kind of impact.
"Every school district has told us they have hundreds of kids on a waiting list waiting to get a mentor," said LeAnn Powers, United Way of Williamson County.
To get involved you contract the district, go through a background check, and fill out a survey that helps place you with a student.
"It's about 30 minutes a week and typically over the students lunch hour so we try and get our partners in and out within their lunch hour," said Michelle Jackson, Community Partnership Supervisor RRISD.
And that lunch break could become the best part of the week.
"It's exciting to have someone who is excited to see you - it kind of goes to your head,” said Melberg. “But they are excited to see you as they are to see them.”
And it's not just elementary school students who need a mentor - middle and high school students are also on the list.
The United Way of Williamson County offers a one stop shop for looking for a school that needs mentors. Click here for more information.
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