Annual Fall Workshop Goals
CASCWA's Southern Section Executive Board met earlier this summer and decided that this year's fall conference would bring together experts in the fields of school related mental health and our members and friends. These are serious issues and all school and district offices need to be on top of these issues in order to address the challenges properly.
There are several topics that we hope to cover at this year's workshop. At the same time, we hope to showcase the expertise of each of the presenters. The following speakers are confirmed. We are currently in the process of confirming additional presenters.
Kelly Barnes, Ed.D, Legal Counsel, Los Angeles USD
Dr. Barnes has exclusively practiced education law for over twenty years and currently works in the Office of General Counsel for Los Angeles Unified School District. She previously was counsel for the Orange County Department of Education, which provides legal services to all the school districts in that county. Prior to joining OCDE in 2013, Dr. Barnes was in-house counsel for the Los Angeles Unified School District for ten years and the Los Angeles County Office of Education for five years. She graduated from the University of Wisconsin with a degree in Secondary Education, English, and an emphasis in Japanese.
She taught for three years before attending the UCLA School of Law. She earned her doctorate in Education from UCLA in 2004. She has extensive experience in advising schools, with specialization in student and employment issues. She is dedicated to educational equity for all students, and is particularly focused on students experiencing homelessness, expelled students, and adjudicated youth.
Heidi Cisneros, Director of Pupil Support Services, Santa Ana USD
Heidi Cisneros works for the 6th largest school district in the State of California. In this role, she is responsible for leading efforts to implement policy and practice around positive school discipline and pupil support services at Santa Ana USD. She is developing a continuum of interventions and services that foster students' personal and academic success. Previously, as Administrator of Safe Schools & Support Services at the Orange County Department of Education, she was known for her vision, creative problem-solving and leadership in the development and implementation of programs serving at-risk youth. She also has extensive experience providing trainings addressing school safety, school-based mental health, crisis response and youth development on a local and national level for more than 20 years.
Heidi Cisneros has a passion for the well-being of all youth throughout the communities she has serves. The programs and teams she has worked with have significantly impacted the lives of some of the most disadvantaged youth in Orange County. This includes but is not limited to gang involved, and incarcerated and homeless youth. She has also been actively involved in developing internships for Master of Social Work students, as well as personally coaching them. She has served as adjunct faculty at Chapman University and USC School of Social Work for several years, teaching social justice, leadership, policy and school social work.
Debbie Comstock, Family Support Specialist, Davis SD
Board Member, Utah's Friends of CASA
Debbie Comstock has a Bachelors’ and Master’s Degrees in Social Work with an emphasis on children, youth and families. She has worked in clinical therapeutic practice as well as community organizing and program development. Debbie has experience working with CASAs in other states, but became interested in becoming a CASA in Utah. She applied, was accepted, and then completed her training in 2012. She says that being a CASA is one of the most rewarding roles that she has ever had.
Debbie’s interest in Child Welfare needs has allowed her to expand her participation in the Utah State Child Welfare Improvement Commission and Chair of the local Domestic Violence Coalition. She is a trained domestic violence and sexual assault advocate, and uses this training, along with learning about trauma informed practice, to train other CASAs in Utah.
Debbie has been married for 39 years and has four amazing children and four fantastic grandchildren. They pull her back to San Diego as time allows.
Rhonda Neal-Waltman, Ed.D, Senior Director of Consultancy
Services at Learning Supports for Scholastic, Inc.
Dr. Waltman has more than 30 years of experience in education reform using a learning supports model and has served as a teacher, counselor, principal, and assistant superintendent. Dr. Waltman first joined Scholastic as a Consultant for Learning Supports and led the action research partnership. Her previous work included transformative efforts with state departments of education, school districts, businesses, and nonprofit organizations. She was recognized by the U.S. Department of Education following Hurricane Katrina for her innovative case management development for homeless children and families.
Dr. Waltman is a leader in education professional development in data-driven instructional leadership, student learning supports, connecting school districts and communities in co-owned strategic planning, public school policy development, school climate and culture analysis, emergency planning, strategic planning, program evaluation, budgeting, organizational development and analysis, and human resources.
She has served as an Adjunct Professor in Educational Leadership at the University of South Alabama, teaching Data Driven Instructional Leadership and Mentoring Leadership and on the Alabama Governor’s Commission on Quality Teaching providing expertise and facilitation in the areas of communication, working conditions for teachers, and policy development.
Kate Sheehan, LCSW, Managing Director, UCLA CARES Center
Ms. Sheehan is a licensed clinical social worker and is a strengths-based therapist working with children, adolescents and their families. She previously worked at the UCLA Resnick Neuropsychiatric Hospital, and led crisis intervention and prevention education efforts at the UCLA Rape Treatment Center in Santa Monica. Her areas of expertise include attachment difficulties, trauma, anxiety, depression, and eating disorders.
Kate earned her MSW from Columbia University, and her MA in Comparative Literature from University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. She graduated with highest honors from Sorbonne University in France, and is fluent in both French and Spanish. She partners with clients to achieve authentic relationships, clear communications, and a genuine sense of purpose. A practitioner of meditation, she has also had a yoga practice since toddlerhood when she was taught by her grandmother.
Workshop & Accommodations will be at
KNOTT'S BERRY FARM HOTEL
7675 Crescent Ave
Buena Park, California 90620
Special Room Rates under Group Code "CASCWA"
Stay and visit Knott's Berry Farm Theme Park!
Please note when you register, you are registering as an individual. If you are registering for yourself and for others, please input the first and last names of the guests in the box for guests and the email addresses for each guest in the box for guest's emails. Registration is limited to the first 175 registrants.
This workshop is an authorized expenditure of:
LCFF, EHCY, TYS, Title 1, SIP, TUPE, and AB 1113 Funds.
CASCWA Federal Tax I.D.# 94-2914528