Safe schools do not happen by chance. Providing our students and teachers with safe and secure environments for learning and teaching has long been a top priority for the Anaheim Union High School District. We believe that school safety cannot be separated from student achievement. Studies show that when students can focus their energies on learning, rather than being concerned about issues such as safety, achievement is higher. Safe schools are successful schools.
This report describes the many prevention, intervention, and preparedness programs that are planned and coordinated by the district. Through partnerships with law enforcement, the support of parents and community members, the dedication of our staff members, and trusting relationships with our students, we involve everyone in creating a campus climate where all students are respected and secure.
Our schools are safe - and we plan to keep them that way.
AUHSD checklist for maintaining safe and secure campuses :
- Proactive prevention programs
- Innovative intervention programs
- Strong partnerships with students, parents, staff members and community agencies
- Quality training programs for students, parents and staff
- Well-maintained school facilities
Planning for safety
Maintaining safe schools requires consistent evaluation and proactive measures for improvement that involve all members of the school community. The Safe and Drug Free School Team, comprised of safety specialists from all schools, monitors prevention and intervention programs districtwide. Each school has a School Management and Resource Team (SMART) that meets monthly to review any incidents on campus and implement action plans to improve the campus culture. Using proactive and reactive approaches simultaneously, the parents, students, teachers and staff members of SMART have an ongoing impact on campus safety and climate.
Each school has developed safety plans that provide a detailed outline for disaster preparedness. The plans are updated annually and guide the actions of school personnel. Site safety teams regularly inspect the schools and monitor ongoing safety efforts. Fire, earthquake and other drills are conducted throughout the year in an effort to prepare and protect students in case of an emergency.
Expecting the most of our students
Just as we have high standards for student achievement, we have high expectations for student behavior. Although we believe standards for behavior must begin at home, we reinforce with students that they are in school to learn and that they will be held accountable for their actions.
Students and parents are well aware of behavior and safety standards and those expectations are posted visibly on all campuses. A clear and reasonable student discipline code, with explicit penalties for those who violate it, has been established. The district rigorously enforces zero tolerance policies for drugs and weapons.
Each school year junior high students voluntarily sign pledges with the superintendent to indicate their willingness to do their best in class and be responsible. Students are later recognized for their efforts. A districtwide dress code is enhanced by academic attire at six junior high schools where collared shirts, nice pants, and skirts are the norm.
The vast majority of our students are well behaved and focused on their learnings. They are often the first to alert campus authorities to any difficulties. Students want their campuses to be safe and free of disruptions.
Making a difference with prevention and intervention programs
Our schools are among the safest in the county because our policies and practices focus on prevention and intervention. Each school uses a combination of support programs and personnel to maintain a safe learning environment.
Partnerships and programs making an impact
- Strong partnerships with police departments in Anaheim, Cypress, La Palma and Buena Park are in place. Police resource officers are assigned to each campus and work closely with staff and students.
- The Peer Assistance Leadership program provides students with the training to help resolve conflicts with other students. Both Sycamore Junior High School and Kennedy High School have been recognized by the county for their outstanding PAL programs.
- Bridges, a unique program organized by the Orange County Human Relations Council, provides students with interactive activities that promote positive discussions about the similarities and differences among people.
- Positive interventions provide targeted assistance to students who make be having difficulties. The students, members of their family member and staff work together to solve problems and recommend strategies for improvement.
- Campus clubs, leadership opportunities, and training programs are available to students. Students are also encouraged to participate in positive after-school activities, such as tutoring, arts, dancing, cooking and sports.
- Chemical Use Prevention Programs and Tobacco Use Prevention Programs are available at each school. Through the Safe, Drug and Tobacco Free Schools program, 27 prevention different activities are in place district wide
- At each school three to five campus aides work part-time to provide additional adult supervision and guide visitors to the main office to receive a visitor's badge. Social work interns, gang prevention and school safety specialists, and a family involvement specialist work districtwide to help students and families.
- School safety and crisis response plans are in place at each school and updated annually. Activities to prevent incidents and structured plans to respond to incidents, including natural disasters, are included in the plans.
- The campus grounds are monitored after-school hours and on weekends by security residents who reside on the campuses
- An administrator is always on campus. As a precaution, all administrators have cell phones for quick, easy access to assistance, if needed.
- Each campus is equipped with a crisis box that contains flashlights, megaphones, clerical materials, AM radios, and other emergency supplies.
- Numerous partnerships with the City of Anaheim provide students with after- school programs about decision-making lessons, planning for college and conflict resolution.
- A safety "hotline" is available for those wishing to anonymously report the use of drugs, alcohol or other potential disruptions.
Reporting safe schools data
Each year the AUHSD reports violations of school safety policies to the state, as required by law. The data are tabulated annually and released publicly each February in a report known as the California Safe School Assessment.
AUHSD places a high priority on providing the state with information on all reportable incidents. The CSSA report plays an important part in the planning and implementing of safe schools strategies. Our efforts continue to pay dividends.
While we have managed to avoid the more serious acts of violence that have afflicted some of our nation's schools in recent years, we remain vigilant. We strongly believe that a school's environment significantly influences a student's opportunity to learn. When campuses have effective safety program in place, the teaching and learning process is enhanced.
Creating a caring culture
We take safety to a higher level by creating campus cultures that are caring. Through targeted training programs, we equip our staff members with the skills to enforce discipline, resolve conflicts, identify troubled students, and treat all students with respect. By serving as role models for appropriate behavior and communication, our employees enhance the school site programs that teach conflict resolution and acceptance of others.
Character Education is an integral part of the culture on all of our campuses. The program weaves character education throughout the schools and classrooms, emphasizing the six pillars of character - trustworthiness, respect, responsibility, fairness, caring, and citizenship.
When students and staff treat others with dignity, cooperation, and respect, and behave in ways that are responsible, honest and of great integrity, the result is a positive environment that is ripe for learning.
Connecting with families
Parents and families play an essential role in helping students to be successful at school and supporting campus safety policies. If a student is having difficulty, parents are contacted to be part of Positive Interventions. The students, their family members and staff work together to solve problems and recommend strategies for improvement. This successful program helps keep students on track for graduation and success in life.
Supporting a quality learning environment with well-maintained school facilities
Studies show that the physical condition of the school buildings has an impact on student attitude, behavior, and motivation to achieve. Typically, schools that are clean, graffiti-free, and well-maintained have fewer incidents of student misbehavior than schools that are unkempt.
Links Regarding School Safety
McKinney Vento and Community Resources
Relevant PowerPoint Presentation
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School Safety Program
Anaheim Union High School District Safe Schools personnel focus on the following nine areas:
EDUCATION: AUHSD Safe Schools personnel facilitate the implementation and infusion of an award-winning seventh and ninth grade Safe Schools student-based classroom curriculum, and the delivery of character education activities.
GUEST SPEAKERS: AUHSD Safe Schools personnel serve as classroom and conference guest speakers for district and area secondary students. The Safe Schools personnel and police officers stress the "Choices and Consequences" of gangs, drugs and violent behaviors, the importance of education and the value of a Character Education lifestyle.
INTERVENTION: AUHSD Safe Schools personnel intervene with students, families and patrons who exhibit behaviors that jeopardize the safety of individuals and the secure and positive environment of a school.
DIVERSION: AUHSD Safe Schools personnel divert, provide resources and collaborative inter-agency referrals for students, families and patrons who exhibit behaviors that jeopardize the safety of individuals and the secure and positive environment of a school.
ENFORCEMENT: AUHSD Safe Schools personnel assist with the enforcement of the AUHSD Board of Trustees Safe Schools policies.
STAFF DEVELOPMENT: AUHSD Safe Schools personnel conduct and facilitate Safe Schools staff evelopment trainings for district, area and statewide school personnel.
PARENT TRAININGS: AUHSD Safe Schools personnel facilitate specialized parent trainings on gang awareness, violence prevention and safe school topics.
SMART TEAMS: AUHSD Safe Schools personnel coordinate the award-winning School Management and Resource Team (SMART) program. This nationally recognized program provides site-based teams an opportunity to implement Safe Schoos programs at the school level. SMART Coordinators, administrators, teachers, staff, students, parents and community members direct local Safe Schools programs and activities.
- SCHOOL/LAW ENFORCEMENT PARTNERSHIP TEAM: AUHSD Safe Schools personnel participate as team members in an innovative Safe Schools partnership. Through collaborations with the Anaheim, Cypress and La Palma Police Departments, police officers and Safe Schools personnel team together daily. This specialized unit focuses on safe school prevention measures on or near the AUHSD school sites, and follows the concept of "community policing in the schools".
Social Work Intern Program
- Intern Orientation
- Adolescent Grief & Bereavement
- My Anger & How to Manage It
- Chronical Anthology
- Social Work Intern Program Evaluation
The Social Work Intern Program
For nearly two decades, college students - both graduate and undergraduate - who are interested in combining clinical work in a school setting have contributed to the educational success of the district's students and families. The interns that choose us come from those interested in social work, family counseling (MFT), or school counseling (PPS Credential), but we also accept interns from other fields such as human services, social ecology, and education.
We are an approved placement site for many local universities like USC, UCLA, UCI, CSUs, Pepperdine, Chapman and even Yeshiva University in New York. The internship hours are flexible depending on availability but generally correspond to regular school daytime schedules. Some accommodations can be made for evening work especially in assignments with Alternative Education.
The interns provide evaluation and treatment to referred students and their families with presenting problems such as substance abuse, impulsivity, depression, anxiety, relational issues, child abuse and neglect for example.
We are always looking for excellent interns and for those interested in more information, please call Adela Cruz, LCSW, PPSC Office: 714-999-7734 fax: 714-808-9090.
Area of Management
Campus Safety Aides
- Restorative Practices