Overview of Safe Schools Program
Our aim in the Cartwright School District is to implement policies and practices to help us sustain safe and caring schools throughout our wonderful Maryvale community. We are striving to redefine school safety by adopting trauma-informed and hope-informed practices in support of all scholars. Our Safe and Caring Committee, our Social-Emotional Leadership Team, and our campus leaders are inspired by our Governing Board and Executive team to ensure all children feel physically and emotionally safe.
Raul Piña Executive Director of Safe Schools and Social-Emotional Learning
Raul Piña has been a part of the Cartwright School District since 2001. He has a Bachelor’s of Arts in English from the University of Texas at San Antonio, and a Master’s in School Administration from Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas. Raul is a former middle school teacher for English Language Learners. This is his 25th year in school administration. Throughout his 21 years in the Cartwright District, Raul has served as an Assistant Principal, Principal, Principal Coach, and the Director of Safe Schools. Raul has been a trainer for teachers and administrators throughout the state of Arizona on topics to include: School Culture, School Improvement, Professional Learning Communities, and a variety of leadership topics. He has also served as adjunct faculty at Grand Canyon University in the Educational Leadership Program since 2011.
The goal at the Cartwright School District is that every campus will have Social Emotional Learning (SEL). SEL is known as a process that will help our students learn how to manage their emotions. Students are given the tools and strategies that allow them to cope and express their feelings with an array of strategies such as yoga, breathing exercises, calm corners, and many others. You can learn more from the SEL department by visiting their Google Site here.
Director, Social and Emotional Learning and Community ProgramsAs an administrator and educator, Dr. Carlos Perez has served in settings that span the K-12 spectrum, as well as district-level administration. His teaching experience includes elementary and middle school teachers as well as being a former high school assistant principal and elementary principal in Anaheim, California. Through this unique set of experiences, Dr. Perez has developed a holistic view of the challenges and opportunities of each school type and developmental stage of elementary and middle school students. But more importantly, leading in these systems has helped him foster knowledge and practice of supporting the adults who support these students.
Social-Emotional Learning Overview
In Cartwright, we believe that Social and Emotional Learning, SEL, is vital to the overall well-being of our scholars. We are committed to practices that promote equity and social justice. Our commitment is to ensure all learning spaces within our schools produce both a real and felt a sense of safety and belonging. Each of our schools is staffed with a school counselor to ensure the social and emotional needs of our scholars are being met. Every school counselor uses Harmony SEL as their curriculum to support our scholars with a variety of SEL lessons that promote responsible decision making, maintaining positive relationships, social awareness, self-awareness, and managing our own emotions.
With a focus on SEL, along with staffing all of our schools with school counselors, we have added additional resources. Safe and Caring Team Members, along with RTIBS (Response to Intervention Behavioral Specialists). Our RTIBS will work closely to ensure all of our scholars feel a sense of connection and safety in our schools. They closely monitor our scholar’s academics, attendance, and emotional well-being in order to offer additional support or a one on one connection with the school counselor.
At our Center for Strong Families and Thriving Children, we have Social and Emotional Learning Specialists (SELS) that are master-level social workers or mental health professionals. They work closely with each school to ensure a variety of services for our scholars and families are being met. Individual and group support is offered alongside any additional wrap-around services the family may need. We welcome you to the Cartwright School District, One Team, Una Familia!