Please note: A similar version of this information also appeared on livewellsd.org.
The Escondido Union School District (EUSD) welcomed our 1,800 employees to the 2017–2018 school year through events focused on connecting staff to each other, developing a trauma-informed school system, and encouraging staff wellness and self-care.
On Thursday, August 10th, all EUSD employees attended an inspirational presentation by Dr. Dawn Griffin, associate professor and program director at Alliant International University, in the concert hall at the California Center for the Arts, Escondido. This training provided attendees with an understanding of the impact of trauma on academic and long-term health outcomes for youth. It also introduced attendees to helpful tools for the continual development of compassionate and trauma informed schools.
The presentation, entitled “Creating Trauma-Informed Systems: Actualizing the Unlimited Potential of Every Learner,” focused on the integration of these trauma-informed strategies into everyday practices for all staff within the district. Employees participating in the training included members of our board of education, district and school site leaders, teachers, and district and site clerical, maintenance and operations, and nutrition services staff.
“We know our students experience a number of barriers to their learning and come to our schools with their own personal challenges,” said EUSD Superintendent Luis Ibarra. “Our vision for the district is to create schools and classrooms where students, families, and staff feel safe, supported, connected, and welcome every day. ”
On Friday, August 11th, the EUSD Annual Staff Health Fair, held at Escondido’s Grape Day Park, provided an opportunity for staff to access resources for staying healthy during the school year — a strategy for creating trauma-informed systems. Organized through the EUSD Human Resources Department, participants took part in health screenings and obtained information related to healthy eating, exercise, and access to preventative health services.
Since 2009, EUSD has been engaged in efforts to create and sustain a positive school climate, and ensure the safety and health of our school community. These efforts include the implementation of positive behavior interventions and supports, restorative practices, cultural proficiency, family engagement, and student and staff wellness.