New club connects football players to faculty

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Teachers and football players came together to bowl at Comet Lanes as part of the Blue and Gold Squad.

About two weeks after the school year began, a new organization called the Blue and Gold Squad formed with a mission to create a social and academic support group for the Decatur High football players.

The club achieves this by assigning 70 faculty and staff members to a football player. The teachers are responsible for building a bond with this player and becoming their support system.

Activities like eating lunch with them, making sure they stay on top of their grades, and other bonding activities build a relationship between the teacher and their players.

“Often times it might be a student that they teach, someone they taught in the past, or someone they just happened to know. So they have a very personally invested interest in the kids,” special education teacher Elizabeth Lewis said.

Lewis has become the organizer for many of the Blue and Gold squad’s activities and has a leadership position within the organization. She organizes events where the boys can socialize with each other and their respective staff member.

This most recent includes bowling at The Comet Pub and Lanes and, in the near future, free tickets for the boys to a Georgia Tech football game and discounted tickets for teachers.

This organization not only connects Decatur staff to the players but to the player’s families as well. Lewis organizes tailgates where staff and the athlete’s families can intermingle and build a trusting community.

“The families come to the tailgate and interact with all the teachers and staff and can build that bridge and a connection,” Lewis Said.

The Blue and Gold Squad will continue to bring together players and families throughout the football season and the rest of the year.

Watch the slide show from the Blue and Gold squads event at Comet Bowling from Beth Lewis on Vimeo.