An online newsletter produced by EdSource
with support from The California Endowment 


June 2, 2015

Issue 33

Student Health
Study: Student Facebook photos of alcohol consumption tied to binge drinking behavior

Underage college freshmen who post Facebook photographs related to drinking alcohol are more likely to have participated in binge drinking -- defined as consuming four or more alcoholic drinks in two hours --  in the last 28 days, according to a study published in the Journal of Adolescent Health.

Lead author Dr. Megan Moreno of Seattle Children's Research Institute found that alcohol-related photographs on Facebook were a more likely predictor of binge drinking than "status update" messages such as "Can't wait for beer pong Friday!" or "likes" on a group such as "National go to class drunk day."

"These photos were not just associated with past 28-day alcohol use, but typically with episodes of binge drinking," Moreno said in an interview via email.

And the more prominently the alcohol-related photographs were displayed, the stronger the likelihood of excessive drinking, defined as four or more instances of binge drinking in 28 days, the study found. Publishing a profile or cover photo -- the two most publicly available locations on a Facebook page --  related to drinking was most strongly associated with problematic drinking, the study found, although the sample size was small.

Moreno, a longtime researcher on ways to use technology to improve adolescent health, and her co-authors suggest that parents observe their child's Facebook page and "seize the moment" to ask about recent alcohol experience. Profile and cover photos generally can be seen by any member of Facebook. Viewing more photos and status updates would require a parent to "friend" a child on Facebook.

Moreno also suggested that college orientation sessions could include information for parents about how to have conversations with their children about alcohol in an "inquisitive and caring manner."

School Climate

Gender Neutral Bathrooms and 'Culturally Responsive' Trainings

San Dieguito Union High School District and Carlsbad Unified School District are among the districts that have designated some single-person bathrooms as gender neutral, as a way to make transgender students comfortable and to comply with state law, U-T San Diego reported. Signed into law in 2013, Assembly Bill 1266, authored by Tom Ammiano, D-San Francisco, gave transgender student the right to use a bathroom that is consistent with her or his gender identity. A gender neutral bathroom is a single-user bathroom that is open to all.

After two years of training school staff in "culturally and linguistically responsive" teaching methods, San Ramon Valley Unified School District says it is prepared to welcome immigrant students, the Contra Costa Times reported. In 2013, the district hired educator Sharroky Hollie to conduct trainings in ways to understand and validate a student's cultural background. "These strategies work for every student, regardless of whether they are a minority or not," Mimi Quan, principal of Quail Run Elementary School, told the Times.

When a Murietta Valley Unified School District elementary student bit into a cupcake made with peanut butter in April, she quickly struggled to breathe.

A school health aide grabbed a pre-loaded syringe of adrenaline from the supply cabinet, injected the girl and contained her allergic reaction until she got to the emergency room, exactly as a new California law intended - but not, in fact, how the law is playing out in many districts.

School-Based Health Centers

Grants for Tobacco Prevention, Obesity Intervention and School Mental Health Care

The California School-Based Health Alliance, the Oakland-based statewide non-profit organization that works to encourage health services in schools, has announced grant partnerships for school-based health centers interested in tobacco prevention, obesity intervention and mental health programs.

Tobacco Prevention
In partnership with the CVS Health Foundation and the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, the California School-Based Health Alliance is looking for school-based health centers "to engage youth in tobacco prevention peer education," the Alliance said on its website. Each site will receive $5,000 to cover costs and supplies. Learn more. Deadline: June 12, 2015.

Fit and Healthy Learning
With funding from the Anthem Blue Cross Foundation, the Alliance is seeking school-based health centers to be part of a 10-month collaborative aimed at implementing an obesity intervention program. Each site will receive quality improvement training, opportunities for collaboration with other providers and a $10,000 stipend. Learn more. Deadline: June 30, 2015.

School Mental Health
This partnership is with the national School-Based Health Alliance. The Center for School Mental Health at the University of Maryland and the national School-Based Health Alliance are seeking participants in their School Mental Health System Learning Collaborative. Learn more. Deadline: June 30, 2015.

Mental Health

Five Compton Unified School District high school students who described their lives as a tangle of poverty, violence and abuse, filed a federal class-action lawsuit stating that the district is legally required to address the effects of chronic trauma on learning.

The lawsuit is believed to be the first in the nation to use special education law to argue for accommodations for students whose ability to concentrate and learn is impaired by the stress of repeated violence, abuse and neglect.

Read more at EdSource Today.

Dental Health
Nearly 75 percent of California children ages 2 through 5 visited a dentist in the past year, according to 2011-12 data from the California Health Interview Survey, a telephone survey that is the largest state survey in the U.S. That compares to 56 percent in 2003, according to a new brief from the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research.
High Needs Students
In the revised May budget, Gov. Jerry Brown proposes funding a program to help foster youth who are attending community college. But he does not call for increasing funds to a service that helps K-12 students be successful in school, as foster youth advocates had hoped. Read more at EdSource Today.

Special Education
Contra Costa County's probation department will ban the practice of locking students with disabilities in their cells for extended periods of time as punishment for their behavior in class, while the Contra Costa County Office of Education will retain an outside expert to ensure appropriate educational services for disabled students in detention, according to legal settlements.
Read more at EdSource Today.

Upcoming Webinar

The California School-Based Health Alliance and Restorative Justice for Oakland Youth are hosting a webinar about how restorative justice programs can create a positive environment where all students have the opportunity to succeed.

What: "Introduction to Restorative Justice for Schools: Embedding Alternatives to Suspension in Schools"

Who: Alicia Rozum, Project Director, Mental Health, California School-Based Health Alliance
Kat Culberg, Project Director, Restorative Justice for Oakland Youth

When: Thursday, June 4, 2 to 3 p.m. PT Note: This is the new time. The event was rescheduled.

Register here.

Recent Editions of the EdHealth Newsletter

EdHealth Newsletter Issue 32: Judge rules medically accurate sex ed is 'an important right'
EdHealth Newsletter Issue 31: State vaccination bill to get 3rd hearing this week
EdHealth Newsletter Issue 30: How healthy is your county?
EdHealth Newsletter Issue 29: Measles cases continue to rise in California
EdHealth Newsletter Issue 28: Autism advocacy group states vaccination link unfounded

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