Richmond Hill, Supervisor of Student Assistance & Prevention Programs
Tamara Chabot, Secretary 703.791.7436
The Student Assistance and Prevention staff offer programs to develop and support students to grow up healthy, caring, and responsible. We follow PWCS Strategic Plan, Goal 2: Climate: The teaching, learning, and working environment is caring, safe and healthy, and values diversity. Specific programs listed below promote a climate which supports equality, diversity, and collaborative behaviors among students and stakeholders. We aim to increase safe, responsible, and healthy behaviors and empower students. The major goal is to increase school connectedness to facilitate positive outcomes.
Positive values and social competencies of:
- Cultural competence, equality, social justice (peer diversity training, peer mediation)
- Resistance skills, planning, decision-making (bullying prevention, substance abuse prevention)
- Peaceful conflict resolution (peer mediation, bullying prevention)
- Caring, positive view of future (suicide prevention, Critical Incident Team)
- Interpersonal competence, honesty, integrity (bullying/harassment prevention)
- External assets are developed in youth by provision of opportunities for leadership
BULLYING PREVENTION and Development of Social Competencies
1. Olweus Bullying Prevention Program:
Student Assistance and Prevention Program supports the anti-bullying message by providing training, evaluation, and support to the growing Olweus Bullying Prevention Program (OBPP). This research based, comprehensive program includes school-wide, classroom, and individual components to address bullying in a way which impacts school climate. It fits well with the positive behavior interventions and supports (PBIS) program and Baldrighe program which also includes the classroom meeting component. Since 2005 seventy schools have been trained in the proven techniques and methods which positively impact the learning atmosphere of our schools.
2. “No Place for Hate”:
No Place for Hate® is an educational initiative that empowers students, teachers, and parents to challenge bigotry, name-calling and bullying. ADL’s No Place for Hate® initiative provides schools and communities with an organizing framework for combating bias, bullying and hatred, leading to long-term solutions for creating and maintaining a positive climate. No Place for Hate® enables schools to:
- Build inclusive and safe communities in which respect is the goal, and all students can thrive.
- Empower students, faculty, administration and family members to take a stand against hate and bullying by incorporating new and existing programs under one powerful message.
- Engage the entire community in anti-bias activities, which ADL helps the schools develop.
- Send a clear, unified message that all students have a place to belong.
Upon completion of the five-step process outlined below, schools are designated as No Place for Hate® for the school year and receive a banner recognizing their accomplishments at a year-end ceremony. In 2015-2016 four PWCS middle schools (Fred Lynn, Woodbridge, Reagan, and Bull Run) achieved the distinction.
3. STUDENT-LED EFFORTS to combat bullying include the “World of Difference” Peer Diversity Program which provides high school students with the training and support necessary to facilitate anti-bias education workshops for their peers in the classroom. The program creates an awareness of the prejudices in society and discusses methods to combat them. Students participate in the annual PWCS Leadership Conference to younger middle school students. Every year peer trainers attend the Washington Symphony Orchestra’s “In Concert against Hate” at the Kennedy Center.
Pictures of Stonewall and Battlefield Students at concert
Within the framework of the 40 Developmental Assets, we promote youth empowerment and show our belief in the value of the contributions of young people. Some schools sponsor Rachel’s Challenge activities and Mix-It-Up days, for example.
Pictured are Hylton Students presenting at Youth Leadership Concert
DIVERSITY and Human Rights: Our HCHY students Lead Team have collaborated with PWC Human Rights Commission to share ideas and visions. PWCS staff members Sam Sanders, Attendance Officer (retired), Vicky Castro, School Social Worker, Dr. Doreen Dauer, Supervisor of Student Assistance and Prevention Programs, and Cynthia Brown, School Social Worker have been recognized With Prince William County Human Rights Awards.
PWCS staff members Sam Sanders, Attendance Officer (retired), Vicky Castro, School Social Worker, Dr. Doreen Dauer,Supervisor of Student Assistance and Prevention Programs, and Cynthia Brown, School Social Worker have been recognized with Prince William County Human Rights Awards.
Prince William County Public Schools is committed to a school environment in which students are free from bullying. Our Regulation was updated to include the following definition which is consistent with the Virginia Department of Education Model Policy.Bullying means any aggressive and unwanted behavior that is intended to harm, intimidate, or humiliate the victim; involves a real or perceived power imbalance between the aggressor or aggressors and victim; and is repeated over time or causes severe emotional trauma. “Bullying” also includes cyber bullying, which involves the transmission, receipt, or display of electronic messages and/or images. Bullying does not include ordinary teasing, horseplay, argument, or peer conflict.
Complaint of Bullying Form
Bullying & Harassment Brochure - What you can do about incidents
Bullying Prevention websites: A recent study shows that 17% of all students report having been bullied more than once within a school year. This means almost one in five students have experienced bullying in some manner. Learn the 10 myths of bullying.
Cyber safety websites: The recent explosion in electronic aggression is alarming to parents and school personnel. Increasing numbers of teens and pre-teens are becoming victims. What can be done about this problem?
Peer Training programs at high schools. Students practice activities, participate in special events, and conduct short workshops, related to diversity and anti-bias education. School coordinators are trained annually.
Battlefield Peer Trainers annually attend "Concert Against Hate" at Kennedy Center
Battlefield High School Peer Diversity student discusses her program with a
Forest Park High School student at the PWC EXPO on May 9, 2015.
SUBSTANCE ABUSE PREVENTION
CRITICAL INCIDENT TEAM
The Office of Student Assistance and Prevention Programs coordinates the PWCS Critical Incident Team to support the schools in the time of crisis.
Accidents, suicide, critical illness, death, acts of violence, and threats of violence may have a significant impact on the routine functioning of our schools. Each school has a crisis plan and team comprised of school staff who manage situations within their school. However, there are many times or situations when the school team may need additional support. Members of the Prince William County Public Schools Critical Incident team are available to assist in those situations. These members have been trained with the PREPaRE program.
SUICIDE PREVENTION PROGRAM
The Office of Student Services continues to implement the Comprehensive Suicide Prevention Program which has won recognition at the state level. The program includes student, staff, new teacher, and mental health professions components. The “Signs of Suicide” (SOS) program is conducted in all high schools in ninth grade and middle schools by a collaborative team of counselors, school social workers, and school psychologists. New teachers are required to take an interactive suicide prevention training. The Office of Student Assistance and Prevention Programs in collaboration with PWCS Media and Production Services has developed an updated suicide prevention on-line training for new and experienced teachers to detect signs of depression and signs of suicidal behavior. New mental health professionals are expected to attend a more intensive training. The Kognito “At-Risk” training is offered to all staff. The purpose of the module is to alert teachers to signs of risky-behaviors displayed in the classroom so that they can assist students make contact with counselors. The Office of Student Services supports student-led efforts to raise awareness of the risks of suicide and depression. In May 2015 and 2016 students from Forest Park organized a walk from Forest Park to Hylton High School to support efforts to prevent suicide
Pictured below are Forest Park students at the PWC EXPO recruiting for the walk.
School counselors, psychologists, social workers, administrators, and nurses have the opportunity to participate in a two-day workshop called, “PREPaRE: Crisis Intervention and Recovery: The Roles of School-Based Mental Health Professionals”. In June 2016 the workshop was facilitated by our own Lauren Daley, school counselor, and Rebecca Zaja, school psychologist. To date we have trained over 150 professionals. The next session is June 19 and 20 (STU 800).