Men's Breakfast, November 8, 2014

The Men’s Breakfast Group met Saturday, November 8th with Tyrone Morrow.  Ty is well known as the former Freeport Police Chief.  He is now working as an administrative officer at Brazosport High School. 
Ty’s primary job is to mentor students who are at risk of going to prison.  He got this job when a student came back to Brazosport from the criminal justice system and the school was wary about him being in the student body without supervision.  The job expanded to include mentoring other students who were in danger of becoming involved with the criminal justice system.  There are about twenty students in the school who are at risk.  About a quarter of them left the program in handcuffs last year, but Ty thinks that the number would have been much higher without his help.  Ty’s program is to develop relationships with the students so that they can confide in him and he can steer them in the right direction.  Ty also interacts with the other students, but not as intensely.  He meets the students at the front door as they come in and monitors the hallways between classes.  During classes he checks security and takes any student back to class if the student does not have a pass.  He can also go into a classroom where a teacher is having a discipline problem and calm the situation.  He is more available for this than assistant principals because he is not tied to an office and other duties. 
Ty does not directly work with the police; he is more the student’s advocate.  However, when a student is arrested Ty can make a fuller report to the judge than a police officer since Ty is not bound by as many legal rules.  There are two Brazosport Police officers assigned to Brazosport High School.  One officer is a stickler for the rules and the other is more concerned with developing relationships with the students.  This can be useful as a good cop/ bad cop interaction. 
Coach Ben Rudolf also came to the breakfast.  He describes efforts with helping the students, especially the athletes.  One problem is that many of the students do not have fathers or other male adults at home or even much parental support.  He said that often there are more students on the sidelines than parents in the stands during JV and freshman football games.  He has set up a program called Anchor Dads, where a man mentors about four to five boys.  The anchor dad is supposed to meet with each boy about once a week to talk with him and often eat lunch with him.  The dad should go to events that the boy is involved in such as football games or other extracurricular activities.  The program is expanding to include a few girls who also do not have dads at home. 
There is also a Christian program call Belay that provides spiritual support to the students.  This is run entirely by the students. 
We also talked about the situation in Ferguson, Missouri.  Ty believes that officer Wilson probably is innocent, but the relationship between the police and the citizens was such that the citizens do not believe the police.  Ty believes that the police need to be involved in the community and develop relations with the citizens of the community to be effective.  For this reason, when he became police chief he moved to Freeport instead of Lake Jackson.  He also encouraged his officers to attend community functions such as our Men’s Breakfast. 
The men had an interesting discussion and a good breakfast.  The next meeting will be Saturday, December 13th.