Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2021, $672,168)
Cajon Valley Unified School District (CVUSD), located in the city of El Cajon in southern California, is requesting funding to conduct school violence prevention training for students, teachers, and District staff and install and implement an alert system with the El Cajon Police to improve the responses by first responders to prevent an incident or intervene when an incident may occur. All Cajon Valley schools will benefit from this STOP school violence initiative as it creates greater understanding of becoming proactive and preventing violence before it even starts. As recent as March 2020, the District’s student population was 17,027 and the staff population was 2,311, including classified and certified staff. The District covers an area of 66.3 square miles and is made up of 27 schools. Poverty is a serious concern among District students with rates as high as 40%, and over half (67.7%) of all students qualify for free/reduced lunch costs. Cajon Valley has a diverse student population, notably first- and second-generation from the Middle East and a significant first- and second-generation population from Central and South America. Discipline at CVUSD shows problems that indicate potential school violence if issues were to accelerate, for example 356 cases of physical injury, 11 bullying, and 89 disruption/defiance. Therefore, the Project goal is to raise awareness among school staff and students and provide tools and strategies to prevent school violence and create a safe and secure school climate and environment. The project objectives will address this goal:
Objective 1: At least 95% staff will complete Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter, and Evacuate training and know the protocols to lead students to safety and/or mitigate the threat of an incident.
Objective 2: Thirty Health and Wellness staff will participate and complete ALICE train-the-trainer instruction and receive certification.
Objective 3: At least 75% of school staff and students in grades 5-8 will increase knowledge and awareness of behaviors resulting from exposure to traumatic experiences and implement an evidence-based approach.
Objective 4: Alert systems for prevention purposes will increase the efficiency of information-sharing for student behavior tracking and response to negative behavior patterns if a real threat occurs.
Activities will be documented and BJA performance measures will be addressed to reflect outcomes. The Coordinator will lead data collection and analysis and complete quarterly and final Project reports. Sustainability plans will be implemented so that Antioch USD will have the necessary resources to continue this essential initiative.