Safety and Wellness
Equity and Opportunity
Henrico County Public Schools will foster an inclusive, safe, and supportive climate for all stakeholders.
Overview of the Goal
It is imperative that Henrico County Public Schools foster an inclusive environment that honors all individuals, regardless of individual differences such as language, varying abilities, learning style, race, ethnicity, culture, gender, sexual identity, religious or other affiliations. Planning and instruction, interventions, and interactions should reflect an understanding of these variables and provide resources for all individuals’ emotional safety and wellness.
Henrico County Public Schools will:
- Administer the stakeholder climate survey annually to all teachers, staff members, and parents, as well as to students in grades 5-12. The survey should include components that relate to perceptions of safety, equity, and inclusiveness.
- Increase programs that promote student participation through peer buddies in language acquisition.
- Involve local universities in volunteering for interpretation and translation services.
- Require training for all staff, delivered online annually, that covers cultural sensitivity and implicit and explicit bias. This would be tracked by site supervisors and school division leadership.
- Increase the number of exceptional education teacher positions to allow more opportunities for co-teaching in collaborative classrooms.
- Continue to use multiple criteria for identifying gifted students from all cultural and socio-economic backgrounds and provide social and emotional support to meet the needs of gifted students, advanced learners, and their families.
- Implement positive behavior programs in all schools by 2025 and have a designated positive-behavior support coach at each school, as well as a division coordinator for elementary, middle, and high schools.
- Evaluate behavior intervention programs, which provide additional services to students outside the classroom setting.
- Train all staff members in trauma-informed care, conflict management, and relationship restoration. The school division will also offer this opportunity to volunteers, parents, and guardians.
- Develop a plan to ensure that all schools and key staff members have tools and expertise to facilitate student-to-student and teacher-to-student mediation.
- Work with local universities to arrange for year-long unpaid internship opportunities for college students studying to be school counselors, psychologists and social workers.
- Increase the availability of the Family Learning Series, enabling greater access to resources to meet a variety of community needs.
- Research best practices for the full-service community school model, which is an instructional philosophy that seeks to serve the whole child inside and outside the classroom setting.
- Make community resources available at a one-stop shop based in the Family and Community Engagement Center. This will also include web resources, in order to respond to all needs.
- Encourage voluntary participation on the Teacher Advisory Council to communicate the needs of teachers.
- Enlarge the Teacher Advisory Council to include multidisciplinary representation (e.g. multiple teachers in buildings and across grade levels, special education and ESL teachers) and explore opportunities to collect and report input from all teachers.
- Explore the feasibility of reducing student-to-staff ratios at schools for the following positions: counselors, psychologists, social workers, and family advocates, to reflect that of local and national goals.
- Examine the elementary health and physical education curriculum and delivery model to ensure that the program allows students the full benefit of a regular wellness and physical activity routine that meets or exceeds state requirements. Ensure that the health curriculum includes early content about substance-abuse awareness in a developmentally appropriate way.
- Examine the middle and high school health and physical education curriculum with an eye toward adding more opportunities to cover mental health and wellness topics, including suicide prevention and awareness.
|Everyone feels welcome, respected, and valued in the school division||Annual surveys given to all students, staff members, and families, as well as to some community members|
|HCPS recruits a diverse staff||Pre- and post-staffing data review will be assessed every 3-5 years.|
|All HCPS staff members are trained in cultural sensitivity and responsive practices||100 percent staff participation in training, measured by the division’s professional development system|
|The ratio of exceptional education students to general education students in collaborative classes decreased by 5 percent from baseline by 2025||Percentage of students with disabilities in the inclusive classrooms monitored and reported annually|
|Decreased out-of-school suspensions||20 percent reduction for the overall number of out-of-school suspensions across seven years|
|All HCPS students, staff members and families are able to identify one HCPS staff member to report concerns, needs and unsafe feelings||Safety audit data|
|All staff members are trained in emotional and social safety||100 percent staff participation in training, measured by the division’s professional development system|
|Increased teacher representation on the Teacher Advisory Council||Teacher Advisory Council composition|