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School Enrollment, Placement & Assessment Center
Newly Issued District Policies
Dear SHHS Staff,
The recent wildfires have impacted many of our students, families and staff. These crisis situations take a toll on us and on our communities, but they also remind us how resilient we can be, and how powerful we are when we come together to help and support each other. Crises also remind us of the importance of time; time with family and friends and time for taking care of ourselves. While our work is extremely rewarding, it can also be very challenging. Please know that your service contributes to our students’ achievements. You play an integral part in supporting our students, often when they are most vulnerable. In order to do this work, we must take care of our health and well-being. Thank you, as always, for your hard work. Every day, in every corner of our District, you make a difference in the lives of our students, families and staff. Your work matters, and I am truly grateful for your service. I sincerely hope that each one of you has a restful holiday break and that you are able to have time for yourself and for your loved ones.
Erika F. Torres, Executive Director
As a member of our Student Health and Human Services Division, every day you provide an invaluable service to our students, staff and parents/caregivers across the LAUSD. Our work requires tenacity, good-will and dedication. This year, our students, families and school communities have experienced extraordinary stress due to political, economic and community circumstances which have increased the demand for our services. It is imperative we understand and practice the concept of “self-care” in order to be at our best at work, with our own families, and ourselves.
Self-care is our ethical responsibility that helps to protect the most valuable resource we bring to our work - ourselves. Self-care includes activities and practices that we can engage in on a daily basis to reduce stress. It also involves developing and maintaining short and long-term health goals in order to maintain a healthy and steady well-being. Self-care is an essential survival skill that is necessary for our effectiveness and success. It is equally important to honor our professional and personal commitments.
Compassion fatigue and vicarious trauma are sometimes the cost of genuine caring for us as professionals in the health and human services field. In the words of Gandhi, “the best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.” The concepts of compassion satisfaction and vicarious resilience reframe these challenges, speaking to the rewards derived from our work. We have the opportunity to gain insight and inspiration from supporting a student and family through struggles, hardships, including recovery and healing. When we become intentional in our work and in our practice of self-care on a regular basis, we enhance our resilience and our opportunity to experience compassion satisfaction.
The link below contains information, materials and resources that can be used to assess what you are doing, as individuals and within your teams, to care for yourselves. The content is based on information found in the University of Buffalo’s School of Social Work “Self-Care Starter Kit” (https://socialwork.buffalo.edu/resources/self-care-starter-kit.html). On this website you will find additional self-assessments, planning guides, exercises, and activities that we hope you find helpful
Below you will find tools to assist you and your teams (each of the following items is explained in more detail at the link above):