Tuesday, February 5

Gatewat to Opportunity Youth Foundation (GTO) is an Athletics and Academics Foundation.  I am the director and co-founder of the SACT (Student-Athlete Counseling and Tutoring) Program.  As a former Football Player, I not only know what it takes to be successful both athletically and academically but, I have the experience to back up the knowledge. I would like to share with you a little of my background regarding my work in this community.  I have been working with the Big Brother and Sister Program for eight years, coaching little league football and basketball for twelve years, volunteering as a chaperone for different youth activities for ten years and volunteering at the community kitchen.  In 2005 I received an award from the City of Chattanooga recognizing my volunteer work in the community. I am dedicated to serving all children so that they too may experience success not only in athletics but also in academics.

There are many responsibilities that we have as teachers of student-athletes.  The most important one is to promote the academic success that is possible to achieve through hard work, determination, and positive support system.  We want parents to understand the value of how important education is in high school, towards attending college, and to having a diverse knowledge base for life's occurrences.  A student-athletes basic support system comes from school guidance counselors that have more than enough student to handle their individual situations, which is where communicating with our professionals that want to improve their student-athletes academic performance.  The overall authority in ensuring parents are satisfied are the principals of each individual school in the Hamilton County School District, Catholic School System, Charter School, or Friends Select School.  This is a chance to allow our professionals to make sure that we promote increasing your student attendance, improving your school's basic test scores, assisting in the marketing for more funding through the appeal of graduation rates above 90%.  To each one - Teach One!  We can all make a difference, so lets start with those that have the greatest attraction for others to join or look up to.  Its a student-athletes responsibility to know that they are cared for, looked after, and looked up to by their peers and family.

Inspiring the Youth,


Jay Cotton