Garden Grove Unified School District (GGUSD) Director of Student Services Dr. Arthur Cummins was honored last week as a recipient of the 2017 Distinguished Safe School Educator award for innovation and leadership in the field of safe school practices. The award was presented by Dr. Al Mijares, Orange County Department of Education Superintendent of Schools and Sandra Hutchens, Orange County Sheriff, Tom Torlakson, State Superintendent of Public Instruction California Department of Education, and David Esquith, Director of the Office of Safe and Healthy Schools United States Department of Education at the state’s 8th annual Safe Schools Conference on July 19.
“We are fortunate to have a well-respected leader in safe school practices as part of the GGUSD family,” said Dina Nguyen, Board of Education member. “We value the work Arthur does each and every day to ensure that our students feel safe at school and that our schools have the resources in place to support the emotional health of all students.”
Under the leadership of Dr. Cummins, several GGUSD schools have implemented PBIS (Positive Behavioral Interventions & Supports), a researched-based framework to promote positive school climates and improve student outcomes. Dr. Cummins provides leadership in innovative restorative practices to help reduce student suspensions and expulsions and provide students with the support they need to achieve success in school.
Dr. Cummins was also recognized for 29 years of service to youth. Some of his many accomplishments include organizing a countywide crisis response team and developing training modules for safe school plans, vulnerability assessments, and active shooter response in his role as Crisis Response Coordinator with the Orange County Department of Education. He also worked with the U.S. Department of Education as a trainer under the Readiness and Emergency Management for Schools federal grant program where he provided training to educators and emergency response management in crisis response, suicide post-ventions, and psychological recovery.