West Contra Costa Unified School District’s Full Services Community Schools has earned a prestigious 2014 Golden Bell Award in the School Climate category from the California School Boards Association (CSBA), it was recently announced.
Full Services Community Schools, which began in 2012 to provide the academic, social and health resources necessary to improve educational outcomes for students, is a districtwide priority.
“This award recognizes the tremendous work that has gone into prioritizing the needs of West County children,” said district Superintendent Bruce Harter.
“Our Board of Education has rightly chosen to support the whole child and our Full Services Community Schools help us in that mission,” he said. “We know that ensuring a child is successful takes the efforts of the entire community, so we want to thank our partners for their help in providing the resources necessary for that success.”
Full Services Community Schools began in Richmond with the establishment of school-based health centers at each of the six comprehensive high schools.
Operated in collaboration with local agencies and community-based organizations, the health centers provide mental health services, medical services, health education, and youth development programs. In the last year, 1,441 students received medical care and 447 youth received individual and group counseling services.
“We have already seen the health centers make an impact on students and improve the climate at our schools,” District Health Services Coordinator Tashaka Merriweather said.
The Golden Bell Award is designed to promote excellence in education and school board governance by recognizing outstanding programs and governance practices of governing boards in school districts and county offices of education throughout California. Exemplary programs in 19 major categories are honored each year.