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Once Again, DHS High Leads the Way!

A few weeks ago, I sat down with Principal Cota of Desert Hot Springs High School. Not only did she impress me, but based off of the responses I have received, she has impressed many of you. We are extremely fortunate to have what I believe to be the most innovative principal here in the valley right here in DHS. Daily we read, discuss, and even view on social networks the frustrations we all share sometimes concerning our youth. As we all know, it takes a village to impact the lives of the youth, and I am honored to say that DHS High has positioned themselves to be a great contributor to the village. As a result of her innovation, DHS High has pioneered an approach to help heal many of our troubled students.

Led by Vera Johnson, Dean of Students, the DHS High wellness center, “Recognizes the need to focus on the whole child.” Many of our children live in and are surrounded by environments that hinder them from achieving their full potential. Upon reviewing the suspension and discipline statistics from previous years, Cota and Johnson led an endeavor to identify and proactively search for ways to aid our students to maximize their time here a DHS High, with the hopes of enabling them with tools to achieve outside school hours. The bigger picture here: Let’s advance DHS by building our youth!

The mission statement of the wellness center provides clarity:

“We understand the importance of fostering a positive, healthy school climate and helping students learn from their mistakes. To meet the needs of our students, we are cultivating progressive and supportive approaches to dealing with conflict through the use of restorative practices. Additionally, we encourage students’ social emotional as well as mindfulness development through programs such as Kid-Grit and Inner Explorer.“

In my tour of the Wellness Center I was pleasantly surprised at the attention to detail. From the room that was occupied by those students who were having a “rough day” to the room that is occupied by Mental Health personnel that allows for privacy, the entire Center has been strategically planned to positively impact our youth. Future plans are to add a creative coloring scheme and present additional services to further enhance the program. Kudos Principal Cota and Dean Johnson, thank you for advancing DHS!

It should be noted that Wellness Center is available to ALL students at Desert High School and is committed but not limited to the following skills.
Self Awareness
Confidence
Building
Self Management
Responsible
Decision Making
Social Awareness
Relationship Skills
Cyber Citizenship
Conflict
Mediation
Anger Management
For more information, please call (760) 288-7056.

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