The process of immigrating to a new country and acclimating to a new culture can be simultaneously challenging and rewarding. Leaving family, friends, and familiar surroundings creates uncertainty and anxiety for many recent immigrant and refugee families. At the same time, friendships and positive relationships established soon after arriving in a new county often last a lifetime.
Even immigrants with extensive professional experience in their countries of origin may need assistance to navigate public education and local resources. Many recent immigrant families report they appreciate guidance and support while they’re assimilating to the U.S. Schools and community agencies can be valuable partners as families maintain and uplift their culture and heritage. Celebrate diversity and prepare to learn a lot from people who recently emigrated to the U.S.
I try to avoid the term “newcomer” because it belies the hardships and trauma many students and families have experienced. The term “refugee” in this layperson’s post, means people who fled or were evacuated from their previous country in order to avoid harm, persecution and death.
Not all recent immigrants are legally homeless, however, School Social Workers and others collaborate and offer assistance for recent immigrants families. We serve families who are vulnerable oppressed and living in poverty, regardless of immigration status. (See NASW code of ethics).
It’s the expectation that recent immigrant students will show evidence of the immunizations required to attend school. To support immediate enrollment, school district and child-serving agencies link families with resources with information so they can obtain primary care and immunizations asap.
Contra Costa County Public Health offers free immunizations, for example at the Clinic on Stanwell Circle.
This information is shared with parents and guardians by HOPE, CWA’s, Nurses, and school staff members.
Please note: Homeless report forms are not “applications.” Homeless students are identified by site personnel each school year.
Not all recent immigrants are legally homeless. A student living with a family member in a stable home environment, for example, is not automatically considered homeless. If you have questions, every school district has a Homeless Education Liaison. In addition, County Offices of Education offer support and assistance enrolling and supporting students in school.
“Making a big school districts feel small;” Connect and form partnerships with refugee-serving agencies; this helps families to have a better understanding of how to navigate health care, public education and mental health resources in the U.S. Children are assigned grade level based on age, not language, previous school experience, or current learning levels. Adult Education and Early Childhood programs and classes are offered by region, i.e. persons do not need to meet residency requirements to participate.
For further information and up-to-date guidance, see information and “Dear Colleague” letters from US Dept. of Education, California Department Education, and CDSS
Our shared vision is students smiling and doing well in school.
James Wogan was selected to be a member of CDE’s Student Mental Health Policy Workgroup (SMHPW). The purpose of the distinguished SMHPW is to assess the mental health needs of California students and gather evidence to support policy recommendations to the California State Superintendent of Public Instruction (SPPI) and the California Legislature. This multi-disciplinary workgroup is comprised of teachers, school counselors, school social workers, school psychologists, school nurses, and school administrators, and state and county mental health professionals.
Tiny home village for homeless youth in Oakland / Berkeley. Way to go @YouthSpiritArts Sally and team at #YSA. Thank you for making community better and for giving young people a chance to give back.
Staff Wellness Program operates out of the Wellness Center.
Positive work environment, appreciation, climate, diversity, breaks & celebration, culture, equity, gender respect, shared vision, meeting in circles, Wellness Center, “work friends” with inclusiveness.
“Package of 5 Wellness Model”
We avoid the simple solutions. We try not to say “If we could just…” because that reinforces a consumer mentality. What’s your Fave 5 when it comes to mental health and work wellness? Five (5) things, when combined together, make a big difference in our own health and wellness.
James Wogan is an experienced supervisor with a background in both clinical psychology (LMFT) and clinical social work (LCSW). James brings the best of both worlds to supervision. James is a passionate and highly successful child and family therapist and school administrator. He has a great deal of experience working in schools, in-patient psychiatric hospitals, rehabilitation / addictions programs, community mental health clinics, and in private practice office settings. James is uniquely qualified to supervise MFTi and ASCW toward licensure as LMFT or LCSW in California. James has experience as a field work placement supervisor with the UC Berkeley, CSU East Bay, and San Francisco State University. Supervisees will receive support and grow and learn as professionals.
Areas covered by clinical supervision:
Child and family therapy – for children, teenagers, and families from diverse backgrounds.
Cultural proficiency, cultural humility, cultural competence.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
Family dynamics – improving parent / child relationships.
Structural family therapy – Salvadór Minúchin
Parenting – raising healthy children.
Intake and evaluation
Differential Diagnoses / DSM 5
Evaluation and referral to Bay Area resources.
Laws and ethics
Transference and counter-transference
Professional development / trainings
Self care / secondary trauma
Boundaries and use of self in therapeutic relationships
Case management – care coordination
Current techniques to treat anxiety and PTSD.
Professional goals, coaching, and guidance
Education / School Social Work / School-based Behavioral Health
School-based behavioral health services
School Wellness Centers
Parent engagement through the lens of equity
Response to Intervention (RtI)
Positive Behavior Intervention and Support (PBIS) / School Climate
Multi-Tiered System of Support (MTSS)
IEP / Section 504: serving youth with special needs
Coordinated Care Teams – Delivery of student support services.
Suicide risk assessment and prevention
Supervision is available in person in the evenings and on Saturdays. Online clinical supervision is available by Skype or FaceTime by appointment. Please go to BBSfor information regarding licensure in California as LMFT or LCSW.
Why Wellness in Schools? SCHOOL WELLNESS CENTERS are a powerful investment in the health and
academic potential of children and adolescents. They provide access to caring
adults and services such as primary care, counseling, mentoring, and peer-to-peer
support. School Wellness Centers support teachers by assisting children and
adolescents to thrive in the classroom and beyond!
SCHOOL WELLNESS CENTERS provide access to free health care,
behavioral health services, and positive youth activities in a location that is fun,
safe, and convenient – at school. Parent University is one of the many great
programs that are offered at School Wellness Centers. http://www.pta.org/parents/content.cfm?ItemNumber=2583
SCHOOL WELLNESS CENTERS contribute directly to school and Mt. Diablo
Unified School District goals under LCAP, such as improved rates of attendance,
support for special populations, and parent and guardian engagement. School
administrators, teachers, and support staff work together to improve social,
emotional, and behavioral health. School Wellness Centers bring people
together with a shared vision for equity and the healthy development of children.
They also provide a platform for inter-agency collaboration, making resources
from the community accessible to children and families in the school setting.