Every Child Safe, Healthy and Connected
This month's newsletter is also available: www.wishschools.org/resources/newsletters.cfm
In This Issue
Quick Links

Tell Us What You Need!
We are conducting our annual Safe & Healthy Schools Professional Development Survey.  Please take 5 minutes to tell us what you need for training: Link to Survey
Find DPI AODA Grant Application Here
AODA Grant Writing Workshops

Need funding for your AODA Program? The DPI will be holding an AODA grant competition in the spring of 2015. Awards will range from $15,000 to $25,000, depending on the size of the district.  


Wisconsin Safe & Healthy Schools Center Coordinators will hold grant writing meetings at each CESA, designed to assist school districts in understanding the requirements of the competition. Remaining Workshop opportunities include:

*DPI Live Webinar: March 12

*CESA #8-Gillett: March 10

*CESA #11-Turtle Lake: Feb. 24

*CESA #12-Ashland: Feb. 25


Archive of DPI Webinar is available: 


Some grant writing workshops will be held in conjunction with CESA Shareshops, others will be stand alone events.  Please contact your local CESA person or a WISH Center Regional Coordinator for more information. Applications are due to the DPI by April 17, 2015.
Mark Your Calendar

Communities in Action to Prevent Suicide

5th Annual Conference

Tuesday-Wednesday, April 28-29, 2015

Holiday Inn
Stevens Point, WI

8 am - 4:30 pm

More information will be coming

My Feelings Matter Youth Poster Contest
The Children's Mental Health Matters Coalition is pleased to present the 2015 My Feelings Matter youth poster contest, in commemoration of National Children's Mental Health Awareness week in May. The Coalition is a Madison-based group of parents and professionals dedicated to promoting children's mental health year-round. They encourage youth from Pre-K through high school to express themselves through their art on the theme of My Feelings Matter, as a way to support the development of children's social emotional health and to generate age-appropriate conversations about the importance of mental health. Please see the contest entry form linked below for contest details and restrictions. Deadline for poster submission is March 20, 2015.
WI Safe and Healthy Schools Center Staff

DIRECTOR: Tracy Herlitzke
Phone: 608-786-4838

NORTH (CESAs #5, #9, #12)
Coordinator: Lynn Verage
Phone: 715-453-2141

WEST (CESAs #4, #10, #11)
Coordinator: Carol Zabel
Phone: 715-720-2145

CENTRAL (CESAs #2, #3, #6)
Coordinator: Jackie Schoening
Phone: 920-236-0515

EAST (CESAs #1, #7, #8)
Coordinator: Christine Kleiman
Phone: 920-617-5645

Brenda Jennings
Phone: 608-266-7051
February 2015
Safe and Healthy Updates
School Safety- 
Where Do We Start?

by Suzanne Sibole, Youth Risk Prevention Specialists

There is a great deal of information in the news these days about school safety.  We frequently hear that schools should practice an active shooter response.  But, what kind of response protocol is best?  And, how often do we need to practice?  We spend a lot of time focusing on school climate.  But, are we doing enough?  We've heard about programs that teach school staff and parents how to identify signs of potential violence in others.  We recently read an article about teaching students to break the code of silence.  But how, exactly, do we do that?


First, we need to remember that school safety is not solely about being prepared to respond to the unthinkable.  School safety starts with an awareness of our everyday actions.  To create a safer school environment for students, we must work to improve the awareness of students, staff and parents about the many ways in which we can make our schools safer on a daily basis. 


We need to work at teaching, modeling and rewarding inclusive, caring and compassionate behavior while correcting harmful behavior.  We should strive to help all students experience a sense of belonging within our school community.  We need to remember that when we listen to our students, they will be more likely to come to us when they need help or are concerned about others.  


We also want to increase our awareness regarding the physical safety of our buildings.  This includes keeping entrances locked during the school day and having all staff members wear ID badges.  It also includes asking that parents and visitors sign in at the office when they arrive on campus and sign students out when they leave the building.  This allows us to keep track of who is in our buildings, and enables us to do a better job of keeping all children safe.  While it may not always be comfortable, we don't need to fear approaching visitors as a possible confrontation.  Rather, it's a good time to educate them about how we are all working together to ensure everyone's safety. 


Our school district's Safety/Crisis Response Plan should include not only detailed protocols for responding to a myriad of incidents ranging from a chemistry lab accident to an intruder, it should include a description of our preventive services, recovery procedures and contact information for all staff and emergency responders.  It must be reviewed and updated annually, and staff should receive training on response protocols, whether they are permanent or substitute staff members.  Staff members should have their own flipcharts containing emergency incident-specific response protocols.  Safety drills should be practiced on a regular basis and it is wise to think through ahead of time how we will respond in a variety of situations.  If we don't already know them, we should familiarize ourselves with suicide and violence warning signs and our district's procedures for reporting concerns.


Yes, it sounds like a lot to do and you already have enough on your plate.  You don't need to do it all alone, and it doesn't have to happen all at once.  School safety is an ever-evolving practice.  Ultimately, true school safety happens only when we work together - school staff, emergency responders, parents and students - to create a safer community.


Suzanne Sibole partners with school districts to improve their level of safety.  To learn more, visithttp://www.youthriskpreventionspecialists.com. 

Burden of Tobacco in Wisconsin 2015

A new report has been released on the health and economic effects of cigarette smoking in Wisconsin. Using data from numerous databases, the Burden of Tobacco report describes the health and economic burden associated with cigarette smoking in Wisconsin.

Major Findings:
  • During 2008-2012, an estimated 6,678 people died from illnesses directly related to smoking each year, constituting nearly 15% of all annual deaths in Wisconsin among persons aged 35 years and older.
  • Another 678 people died from illnesses and fires indirectly related to smoking.
  • Collectively, 7,356 Wisconsin deaths were associated with tobacco use each year.
  • The annual economic toll of tobacco in Wisconsin was approximately $3.0 billion paid in direct health care costs and $1.6 billion in lost productivity. Read More
DEWS New Homepage Live

The Wisconsin Dropout Early Warning System (DEWS) is in its second year of reporting and the 2014 rosters include some improvements:
  • Earlier Identification. New this year are the 6th grade rosters, which were based on 5th graders in 2013-14. Schools with Grades 6, 7, 8 or 9 can log into the secure WISEdash and access each grades' roster and accompanying student profiles.
  • Better Prediction. The risks scores are more accurate this year, as they are less sensitive to fluctuations in small numbers in small schools' historical graduation rates. As such, smaller schools will see some stabilization in the early warning risk scores.
DEWS has a new home page at http://dpi.wi.gov/dews and includes a new Dropout Reduction Strategies Guide that summarizes research and evidence-based strategies to reduce dropouts and promote graduation.  This home page provides information about DEWS and how you can access students' data in your school and district.
Wisconsin's DEWS was recently featured in a National Public Radio (NPR) Marketplace Report at http://www.marketplace.org/topics/education/learningcurve/using-data-predict-students-headed-trouble
2015 WISH Professional Development Opportunities

Please visit our website calendar often for updates and to register for events: www.wishschools.org.

PREPaRE Workshop 2*

Emerging Drug Trends

Helping Students Through Trauma & Loss

School Based Suicide Prevention
  • Coming Summer 2015, Online AODA Course*

*Graduate Credit Available for fee through Viterbo University

All events are contingent on a minimum of participants.

Wisconsin Safe & Healthy Schools Center | 608-786-4838 | therlitzke@cesa4.k12.wi.us | http://www.wishschools.org
923 East Garland Street
West Salem, WI 54669