Weekly roundup: H.B. district implements federal security assessment, Saddleback College turns 50, and more

At a news conference this week, the Huntington Beach City School District announced that it’s adopted a robust security assessment developed by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

According to the Daily Pilot, the 7,000-student district is the first in the nation to implement the new federal school safety guide, which promotes best practices for preventing gun violence and other threats to schools. Created specifically for kindergarten through grade 12, it was released in July following the tragic shooting at a high school in Parkland, Fla.

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“Unfortunately, it is no longer enough to provide an excellent education,” Superintendent Gregg Haulk said at Dwyer Middle School, according to the report. “We must now also provide an excellent educational environment, which includes keeping our students safe.”

The guide will help school officials and community partners assess Huntington Beach’s nine campuses and evaluate the need for enhanced security measures, which could include cameras, alarms or additional fencing. The Pilot story says they conducted an assessment of Dwyer on Wednesday.

And here are some other education stories from the week ending Sept. 28:

  • Saddleback College kicked off of a nine-month celebration of its first 50 years with a golden anniversary bash that included cake, games and alumni, including the college’s first homecoming queen.
  • Despite additional funding and a modest uptick in teacher preparation programs, California’s persistent teacher shortage has worsened in recent years, according to a new report. Part of the challenge is the increased demand that’s been created by lowering class sizes and restoring programs that were cut during the recession.
  • The North America Scholastic Esports Federation, which continues to expand after starting last year with about 40 teams from Orange County, has announced a new game for its upcoming fall tournament.
  • Competing rallies were staged outside as the Orange County Board of Education hosted a forum on the California Healthy Youth Act. The state law, approved in 2015, requires districts to provide students with comprehensive sexual health education, including information about HIV prevention, at least once in high school and once in middle school.
  • With the goal of helping more students become physically fit, the Los Angeles Chargers are reaching out to Orange County campuses and offering to host mini “training camps” as part of the NFL PLAY 60 campaign.

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