Monitoring Progress: Dedicated Jonathan Jackson Directs Students The Right Way 


Dave Quick

On Guard for Good: Hall monitor Jonathan Jackson, now in his second year at North Atlanta, projects his positive influence across the school but with a particular focus on the freshman-dominated fourth and fifth floors.

“Good morning, Warriors!” There are a few bright faces that we see on the daily while shuffling through the front lobby door. These people start our morning with smiles on their faces, and the most cheerful among them is the man, myth, and legend: dedicated hall monitor Jonthan Jackson. In the course of two year’s time, since he first started at North Atlanta, the everywhere-at-one-time presence has made himself an indispensable part of school life, especially among freshmen. 

Jackson, an Atlanta native who was born in Northside Hospital, grew up in the southwest part of the city, and attended Benjamin E. Mays High School, a sister APS school to North Atlanta. For college, Jackson first started at Southern University in Baton Rouge, La. He went on to earn a bachelors in business management and marketing at Tennessee State University in Nashville. “For me the college experience was difficult but I’m lucky and glad to be in the position I am in now,” said Jackson.

As of right now, Jackson’s official job title is “non-instructional paraprofessional.” The upshot of that impressive sounding task is that he gets to do the hardest job in the school: patrolling the always crowded and sometimes rowdy halls of Dubland. Adding to his challenges is that Jackson is tasked with assisting on the fourth and fifth floors. This is the district, he knows all too well, where the freshman roam and where immaturity scales can sometimes hit record levels. “Hey: God sometimes calls for us to take on the harder tasks,” he said. “And that’s something I’m always quite ready to do.” 

Jackson, a self-described lover of people, said a big part of his job is understanding what makes each student unique. “My favorite part about NAHS is being able to interact with the students and supporting them if or when needed,” he said. 

As one can imagine, this job does have its ups and downs, especially when rebellious students deter from doing the right thing at school. Mischievous minors roam the halls during class time, which is when Jackson steps in. Students who interact with this energetic presence on a day by day, hour by hour basis, say Jackson’s strongest attribute is the abiding respect he always projects toward the student body. In an uncanny way, he shows an acute understanding of the teen mind. “I remember when I was in their shoes. There were challenges for me at that time and I overcame those,” he said. “My big message to them is that I did it so they can too.” 

Jackson’s hard-working nature and his earnest support for the students in his halls is not lost on the very people he serves. Students queried about him have unalloyed praise for the hall monitor they have come to love and respect, even if he occasionally has to bark at them. “He’s always there and he’s certainly the one who makes sure we get to class on time,” said freshman Nevaeh McNeil. “Yeah: We all know he can be strict at times and he certainly gets on to us but we know he’s got our best interests in mind. Everyone loves Mr. Jackson.” 

Any time spent on the floors where he patrols can hear his booming voice. “One Minute: Let’s get it!” “Be on time! Let’s be early!” “Where are we headed?” “You, good?” These are the many voices of hard-working Jonathan Jackson. A hall monitor extraordinaire and a powerful positive force for our students. Thank you, Mr. Jackson!