The ABC Unified School District Board of Education has unanimously approved the formation of crisis intervention teams to deal with problems of drug abuse, sexual abuse, child abuse and possible suicide at all its campuses. Each team will be made up of a psychologist, a nurse, an administrator and a counselor.
"This does not mean there will be a psychologist for every campus, but one will be available along with other team members to respond to a potential crisis," said Terry McAlpine, district spokesman. The 21,000-student district has 29 campuses in Cerritos, Artesia, Hawaiian Gardens and part of Lakewood.
The teams will be given professional training on how to detect early signs of trouble, said Robert Bess, chairman of the district crisis intervention committee. Details are still being worked out, but the training probably will be given by experts from the county Department of Education at little or no cost to the district, Bess said. The program is expected to start by the end of next month.
"These are not treatment teams, but they will be trained to intercede immediately (during a crisis) and refer students and their parents to professionals," Bess said.