Dr. Debra Sacks has been an educator for over 35 years and has a passion for improving the lives of at-risk students by providing resources, programs, and the personal skills to develop a growth mindset so that the personal dreams of any teen can become their reality. Her career experiences include teaching high school, continuation high school, adult education, teacher education, serving as a school principal and administrator for Riverside County Office of Education, and providing oversight of State and Federal grants. Debra also worked with the Riverside County Superintendent of Schools on the initial blueprint and implementation of the nationally-recognized Come Back Kids (CBK) Dropout Recovery School (2008) as well as the development of the College Connection mentoring program (2011) for youth in Riverside County, including court, community, YouthBuild, foster youth, and adjudicated youth. Both programs have received the California School Board Association Golden Bell Award (CSBA). She has been featured for her work in education on both the PBS/KVCR American Graduate Series and KUCR radio show at the University of California Riverside. She currently provides coaching and consulting for five districts in Positive Behavior Intervention Supports, Social Emotional Learning, Mindfulness in Education, Restorative Practices, Restorative Conferencing, and also develops on-line Social Emotional Learning courses for teens. She does motivational speaking for disengaged and foster youth as well as teacher educators. Debra is a life-long learner, writer, athlete, poet, mother of three, wife, and pet owner. She is an advocate of self-care and believes people of all ages need to move to stay healthy and ready for life’s adventures!
Operations Economic and Workforce Development Values and Decisions: A Blended Learning Approach Faced with the urgent need to address the social emotional learning (SEL) needs of our students, Come Back Kids (CBK) has developed a unique comprehensive strategy for addressing those concerns served in an independent study setting. CBK is a dropout recovery and prevention charter school operated by the Riverside County Office of Education. Over 90% of our students are between the ages of 18 and 24 and virtually all have experienced multiple educational, social, and emotional challenges that have affected their educational success. Our goal was to provide a Tier one intervention that would improve retention and graduation rates as well as develop social capital with adult students and staff. The development of the Values and Decisions Course in the on-line learning platform, blended learning model was the result. Values and Decisions is a two-semester elective course comprised of ten online learning modules. It is a school-wide intervention funded in our LCAP addressing State Priorities: Student Engagement, School Climate, and other Student Outcomes. Our staff is evaluating the effects of student growth from pre/post surveys and comparing student attendance rates, retention rates, and enrollment in advanced courses by students who have completed the Values and Decisions on-line SEL course.
the annual alternative accountability policy forum is a conference from: