Educators and Law Enforcement to Convene for 13th Annual Safe Schools Conference

Educators, law enforcement to convene for 13th annual Safe Schools Conference

Three-day event will feature breakout sessions highlighting trends and best practices

More than 500 educators, school workers and law enforcement representatives will have the opportunity to participate in dozens of workshops addressing critical school safety issues at the 13th annual Safe Schools Conference, which will take place Wednesday, July 13 through Friday, July 15 at Delta Hotels Anaheim Garden Grove.

Presented by former California Secretary of Education Dave Long through his firm, Dave Long & Associates, in collaboration with the Orange County Department of Education and the Orange County Sheriff’s Department, the three-day event is designed to amplify best practices and increase collaboration between the education and law enforcement communities.

This year’s conference is expected to draw administrators, school board members, counselors, police officers, youth service workers and other school and community leaders interested in learning more about student safety and its impact on attendance, engagement and academic performance.

Breakout sessions will cover a range of topics including bullying, holistic wellness and social-emotional learning, responses to racism and targeted hate, disaster preparedness, gang awareness, crisis response, mental health, behavioral threat assessments, social media and youth, drug abuse prevention, and human trafficking.

Each day will feature one general session. On Wednesday, July 13, Kyler Erickson, who at 18 witnessed a school shooting by one of his classmates, will take a deep dive into mental health, suicide prevention and campus shootings. On Thursday, July 14, Azim Noordin Khamisa and Tony Hicks will talk about the tragic event that brought their lives together and how they are working to break the cycle of youth violence through positive choices and the principles of nonviolence and peacemaking. On the final day of the conference, Orange County Sheriff’s Department Lt. Alonzo Winston II and Sgt. Michael Walters will break down the opioid crisis and share the latest developments on other drugs.

Continuing an annual tradition, the 2022 conference will present two Distinguished Safe Schools Awards. This year’s honorees are the School Mobile Assessment and Resource Team (SMART) administered by the Orange County Sheriff’s Department, and Monique Yessian, director of student services for the Tustin Unified School District.