Deer Creek’s School Health and Wellness program received high grades its first year in place.
“I would rate the program as very, very successful,” said James Rose, director of student services for the district and supervisor of the School Health and Wellness program.
“Originally the idea came to us because of the increase in the number of suicides in our area, not just students, but also other members of the families,” Rose said.
“We were able to meet the needs of several students who were suicidal,” Rose said, “and through intervention we were able to get them help.”
In an end of year update, Andrea Larabee, coordinator of the School Health and Wellness program, told Deer Creek School Board members Monday the office had received 140 referrals. Of these referrals, the School Health and Wellness Program made direct contact and provided consultation/recommendations to 118 students and families. Of the 140 referrals received, parents and or guardians were contacted and 118 gave permission for consultation with their child.
Individual/crisis counseling was provided to 88 students in the Deer Creek School District totaling 626 individual/crisis counseling sessions.
Of the 88 students seen, Larabee said 12 of those were identified as having suicidal thoughts and services were obtained for them.
In addition to students, seven school employees took advantage of receiving consultation on personal issues.
The district provided 23 support groups within the elementary and middle schools.
In the elementary schools 11 support groups were formed including friendship skills groups, and 12 support groups were formed at the middle school including groups dealing with friendship, stress management and grief.
Two evidence-based Prevention Programs were implemented and made available to all Deer Creek High School freshmen.
These two programs were Lifelines: Suicide prevention program and Safe Dates: An Adolescent Dating Abuse Prevention curriculum, Rose said.
Three school psychologists, one psychology intern post-op through the University of Oklahoma Health Science Center, and master’s-level counselors working on internships were all available to work with students or the adults on staff needing help, Rose said.
Larabee supervises counseling the interns who come from the University of Central Oklahoma, Oklahoma State University, the University of Oklahoma or Southern Nazarene University.
Rose said there has been a lot of interest from the colleges, because the Deer Creek program is one of the few places where counselors are actually able to counsel students.
Dr. Steve Sternlof with the OU Medical Center is a licensed psychologist who contracts with the district to do supervision with the interns along with Larabee.
“This is a great opportunity for interns,” Rose said. “They are able to meet, discuss cases and counseling techniques and there are a lot of support and services for them to use. They get a school perspective and a counseling perspective.”
Rose said every case is triaged and a determination is made as to the level of the student’s needs.
“If an individual is clinically depressed we have the ability to make a referral to a community service,” Rose said. “Typically we do the legwork and help find a staff with a psychologist and psychiatrist.”
Rose emphasized that permission is obtained from parents or guardians for individuals, friends or group counseling.
“Occasionally we have a parent who declines, but it is rare,” Rose said. “Most parents welcome service during school. Data is available to counselors who have access to school records as well as information provided by the teachers.”
The numbers of students counseled in this first year were about what Rose said they expected while getting the program started.
“This is a continuing program and it does seem to be growing,” Rose said.
Wanting to expand, Rose said a grant for drug awareness has been completed and sent to the State Department of Education.
“We are wanting to hire someone half-time to help implement curriculum for drug awareness and the impact of drugs on health and the brain and how drugs impact a human being,” Rose said.
Deer Creek’s School Health and Wellness program received high grades its first year in place.
Lilyfield reschedules ‘Dunks for Diapers’
Lilyfield Christian Adoption and Foster Care has rescheduled its Dunks for Diapers event.
Lilyfield holds a diaper drive with the Oklahoma Christian University Women’s basketball team to benefit foster children. Anyone bringing diapers, wipes or new baby items for ages 0-24 months will gain free admission to the women’s game versus Lubbock Christian University, which will begin at 1 p.m. Saturday at the Eagles’ Nest on the campus of Oklahoma Christian in Edmond.
“This will allow us to give foster families much-needed necessities when they receive placement of a foster child. Often placements happen with little notice and the child may come into a foster home with nothing but the clothes they are wearing,” said Holly Towers, executive director of Lilyfield Christian Adoption and Foster Care.
School back in session Wednesday
Parents are heaving a sign of relief while some students aren’t going to be quite as happy.
“All classes and activities will resume Wednesday in Edmond Public Schools,” said Susan Parks-Schlepp, director of public information and community involvement. “Slick spots remain and buses may be running a bit late but secondary roads are in much better shape after significant thawing.”
As reported earlier, students will not be making up the four snow days taken off from school this past week.
Federal energy efficiency tax credits ending in 2013
If you are planning to do some home improvements to make your home more energy efficient, now is the time to take action. Multiple federal energy efficiency tax credits are set to expire permanently at the end of the year.
Oklahomans have until Dec. 31 to take advantage of a cumulative maximum of $500 in credits for energy-related improvements completed in 2011, 2012 and 2013. The credits are a cumulative maximum of $1,500 for improvements done in 2009 and 2010.
The tax credits are for energy improvements done to existing homes owned by you, and used as your principal residence, said Scott Frazier, Oklahoma State University Cooperative Extension energy management engineer. New construction and rentals are not eligible for these federal tax credits.
UCO to graduate more than 1,000 students Friday, Saturday
The University of Central Oklahoma will celebrate the achievements of about 1,179 graduates during the fall 2013 commencement ceremonies Dec. 13-14 in Central’s Hamilton Field House.
Beginning at 1 p.m. Dec. 13, UCO President Don Betz will confer degrees on students who have applied to receive bachelor’s degrees from the College of Education and Professional Studies. Later at 5 p.m., the ceremony for about 200 master’s degree candidates will begin.
At 10 a.m. Dec. 14, commencement ceremonies for students who have applied to receive bachelor’s degrees from the College of Business and College of Fine Arts and Design will begin. At 2 p.m., the College of Mathematics and Science and the College of Liberal Arts will begin the commencement ceremonies for students who have applied to receive bachelor’s degrees.
UCO’s Central Pantry celebrates a year of service
Looking back over the last year, University of Central Oklahoma Volunteer and Service Learning Center Coordinator Eric Hemphill has one word to describe Central Pantry’s growth: “extraordinary.”
In its first month of operation, the pantry assisted just 24 people. In October the number had grown to 740.
The pantry, opened in November 2012, provides non-perishable food and hygiene items to any student, faculty or staff member who is in need. Central students, faculty and staff volunteers manage the pantry’s daily operations.
Deer Creek looks at remediation percentages of college-bound students
During Monday’s school board meeting, members of the Deer Creek Board of Education will be looking at the district’s rate of students requiring remediation upon entering college. The numbers are based on a 2011 report.
The 2011 Remediation Rates of Oklahoma High School Graduates in Oklahoma Public Higher Education were presented showing the comparison of Deer Creek High School graduates with surrounding school districts as well as districts in like size.
Officials say repeal of Common Core ‘unlikely’
Despite continued opposition to new public-school standards, Oklahoma education officials say they are more confident than they were earlier this year that the standards will be fully implemented.
Theatre receives OKC Community Foundation Grant
The Oklahoma Children’s Theatre is proud to announce that it has been awarded a grant in the sum of $10,000 from the Oklahoma City Community Foundation for its Page to Stage program, a traveling, workshop series for underserved schools.
New 2014 GED program website and registration launches
GED Testing Service announced that registration and new cutting-edge resources to help prepare for the 2014 GED test are now available with the launch of the organization’s new MyGED website. MyGED — which can be found online at GED.com — is a free site that will help adults register for, take and be better prepared for the GED test. Beyond the basics of testing, it will help students identify career pathways, and more easily navigate to jobs and into college training programs required for most of today’s job openings.
Edmond school board OKs replacement, renovation at three local school sites
Edmond Board of Education members passed a number of items concerning funds for replacement or renovation at local schools Monday.
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- Lilyfield reschedules ‘Dunks for Diapers’