by Mike Overbey, Chief Operating Officer
West Clermont Schools
Student and staff well-being is a constant theme at West Clermont. In light of recent national and local events, it is the first of several topics we are addressing with our community at our Town Hall meetings that we would like to update you on. Over the next several weeks, we will share with you our existing and ongoing efforts around physical safety, social-emotional wellness, cyber safety, and crisis response.
Continuous improvement is our motto and feedback is vital to our process. Over the past year, we have administered multiple surveys and reviewed our data to gain a better understanding of our stakeholders’ perception of student and staff well-being. Feedback has shown that we have some work to do to continue building strong processes and strengthen our trust with the West Clermont community.
When asked “How confident are you that students and staff at your selected school are in a secure learning environment that provides for their well-being and safety?” in the latest REACT survey, 73% reported some varying degree of confidence, while 27% reported not feeling confident.
Similarly, 44% think West Clermont is about the same as other districts in our area in terms of providing a secure learning environment that provides for student and staff well-being and safety.
Written comments indicate that our community has specific concerns around the following:
- Increase in significant student behavioral needs in the classroom
- Need to minimize negative student behaviors
- Need for more mental health services for students
- Need to address bullying/cyberbullying
- Physical and emotional safety concerns at the West Clermont middle and high school
Our student attendance and discipline data are also an area for improvement. We have too many students missing too much school for various reasons. Almost 25% of our students are considered chronically absent meaning that they were absent at least 10% of the time. Our discipline data shows that we need to improve in areas such as disrespect, disregard of reasonable directions, abuse of another, chronic misbehavior, physical aggression and vaping. On a positive note, survey data shows an overall decrease in drug and alcohol use by our students.
Over the next year we are committed to addressing safety and well-being through our Citizens Advisory Commission (CAC). The Citizens Advisory Commission (CAC) is a volunteer team of district parents, community members, and educators responsible for conducting research on Board of Education identified priorities, reporting those findings to the Board of Education, and making suggestions or recommendations. The next area of research for the CAC is the district's current systems for safety—including infrastructure, personnel (physical and cyber safety), partnerships, and determining the adequacy of safety policy and plans.
In next week’s blog, learn more about how our Whole Child Framework is helping to address these challenges. Rest assured, we have our hands on the wheel and are committed to not allowing safety and well-being to become a pothole on our road to success.