“For me, the idea of the Wellness Centers started with a belief that it is important to provide our students with everything we can to support their success in life,” she said. “In life there are challenges and complications. While most of us know how to adjust to life's challenges and complications that doesn't come easy for everyone.”
Dr. Moore and the entire Hart District governing board began looking into student wellness two years ago when it was widely reported stress and anxiety levels were rising. After hearing reports from all of the District’s schools and touring other wellness centers in Southern California, the decision to open these two centers was made.
“The Wellness Centers provide a safe place for students who may need an adult to talk to about life's stresses,” Dr. Moore said. “The highly skilled professionals in the Wellness Centers can share coping skills and strategies to help students know how to handle the many stresses of life.”
The first two District-sponsored Wellness Centers are fully operational at Canyon and West Ranch high schools. The objective initially is to collect assessment data that will then be used when configuring wellness centers in each of the District’s other 15 schools.
“The bottom line for me is knowing that in some cases the ability to manage life's stressors can be the key to saving a life.”
Photo: Dr. Cherise Moore (left) presents books to West Ranch Wellness Center Coordinator Nancy Phillips with WiSH Education Foundation's Amy Daniels