Weekly roundup: Santa Ana Unified launches mental health campaign, storm delays return of students from science camps, and more


As the need for mental health supports in schools increases, the Santa Ana Unified School District has launched its own “We Care, Get Help” campaign.

On Feb. 14, the Board of Education passed a new resolution recognizing every third Wednesday of February as the district’s annual “We Care Day” to unite the community in support of students in crises.

The month-long campaign is aimed at making students more comfortable seeking mental health assistance, increasing awareness of the warning signs of suicidal ideation, and sending a message of hope and care to all students, staff and families.

SAUSD We Care Day

The festivities kicked off Feb. 15 with “We Care Day,” in which students throughout the district took part in special activities based on a student self-care calendar, a districtwide social media challenge and a themed spirit week to show what mental health awareness means to them.

The district also hosted a resource fair for students and families to learn about the mental health resources available through the Santa Ana Unified support services. In addition to student supports, school officials offered workshops for parents to learn about suicide prevention and the “We Care” campaign.

“Our students and our staff need to know who those resources are that they can turn to on a school campus, especially when every minute matters,” said Sonia Llamas, assistant Superintendent of K-12 school performance and culture, in a districtwide video.

Students, parents and staff throughout the district can receive support by contacting the Santa Ana Unified mental health helpline at 657-290-9527. Additional resources are available at sausdlearns.net/sausd-we-care.

Here are the other stories we’ve been following this week:

  • A severe winter storm delayed the return of hundreds of OC students from outdoor science camps held in the mountains. The Orange County Register reported on Friday that students from at least two districts will remain at their camps for an extra day or two until driving conditions improve. All campers are in the care of their teachers and camp staff.
Anaheim Elementary School District superintendent, his family and AESD Board of Education members
  • A second-grade student from the Fullerton School District recently published her first book, titled “The Cat Princess,” which she wrote in memory of her late mother.
  • The Ocean View School District has paused talks to consolidate four campuses after holding community meetings at each of the affected school sites.
  • With the Ensure Justice conference coming up next month, county Superintendent Dr. Al Mijares reflects on the importance of efforts to prevent human trafficking in our communities and keep students safe.
  • The Orange County Board of Education passed a resolution calling for an investigation into hiring, supervision and safety procedures at Orange County School of the Arts. As reported by the Register, the resolution follows lawsuits filed by former students alleging abuse.
  • The California Department of Transportation has named its new traffic cone mascot, “Safety Sam,” with help from a contest-winning submission by Huntington Beach sixth-grader, Miller Ruiz.
  • In response to a complaint filed by a retired federal judge, the Fair Political Practices Commission said it will investigate whether an Orange County Board of Education member adequately disclosed all financial interests, the Voice of OC reported.

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