Students perform better in school and have fewer discipline problems when a father or a male role model is engaged in a child's education.
That’s the takeaway from more than one study, as well as the occasion for Wednesday’s "Dads Take Your Child to School Day" observance in Florida.
The statewide initiative aims to highlight the significance of fathers and male role models.
James Adams brought his 11th grade son to Gibbs High School in St Petersburg. Adams was raised by a single mom and says he missed having a male to connect with.
"It's easy to be a father. It's hard to be a dad,” he said. “You structuralize and you give them skills. That's easy to do if you've lived a life without that. It just takes dialogue. Please talk to your children. It’s simple to do."
Hall of Fame Football Coach Tony Dungy was the keynote speaker at the dad's day event at Gibbs High School. He spoke to students and dads about character development and the importance of education.
The NBC football analyst and Pro Football Hall of Fame coach credited his own father for encouraging him to go to college.
"I actually played three years in the NFL and got traded a couple times, got released and I was finally done playing at 25 years old,” said Dungy. “At that point I was glad that I did take my dad's advice and I kept my options open and I had my degree."
Dungy told the students and dads that he would not have the skill set to be a coach without a college education. That, he said, means he would not have led the Tampa Bay Buccaneers or won the Super Bowl with the Indianapolis Colts.