By Lily Birdt
Teachers are mandated reporters, which means that if anything which causes them to be suspicious of child maltreatment, including abuse, neglect, or self-harm, they are required to report their situation to the Department of Children and Family Services and possibly law enforcement. While it is common knowledge that you can see teachers for help with grades and issues regarding to their class, teachers can also help with issues of underlying of mental health such as emotional abuse. Teachers can also refer to the dean a student having issues involving other students.
If you are not doing well in certain areas with regards to school or have stress, you may see your designated counselor for help. Counselors may assign students any of the number of interventions on campus or other resources. Counselors help with program changes, credit recovery, even accessing college classes early. They are often a tool to managing stress in regards to academics.
School Social Worker
The school social worker, Dr. Barbara Ackermann, sees over 400 students every year. Students can be referred to her by teachers, administrators, sometimes friends, and even by parents. Students can also self-refer when they are feeling depressed or anxious. Ackermann sees students for problems with family, grief, depression, anxiety, conflict with their peers, etc. Some students are further referred to other therapists off campus. Additionally, Ackermann provides students with severe anxiety a pass to the health office for panic attacks or anxiety attacks.
The school police officer is Officer Hernandez and the Deputy Probation Officer Tannous, both of whom may be contacted via email. While their jobs are to help keep students safe on campus, the are also available to help answer questions about legal issues. If students are concerned about something like abuse or drugs, they can consult the officers.
The school psychologists are specifically oriented towards the special education department. 504 Plans and the Individualised Educational Program (IEP) contain accommodations for students with conditions or a disability. Students must go through relatively lengthy processes in order to gain a 504 Plan or an IEP, which are considered formal interventions anchored in educational code. The psychologists help to evaluate these students and work with them to be successful in their classes.
Title IX Coordinators
Title IX of the Education Amendments states that no person shall be discriminated against on the basis of sex in education programs or activities which receive Federal financial assistance. This includes academic programs as well as athletics. The school’s Title IX Coordinators are Lori Zaragoza and Norm Holloway. You can find out your rights and how to file a Title IX complaint on the GHCHS website.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-8255