College At What Cost?

"College at What Cost?" Update

College at What Cost? Presentation

Dr. Slavin's Presentation to the Parents

We began the "College at What Cost?" event with a Friday showing of Race to Nowhere. It was extremely well received and the expert/student panel after the movie was quite possibly the best part of the evening.

As the program continued, this week we had a very active Wednesday and Thursday at IHS:

Student Assemblies: Dr. Slavin spoke to the 9th and 10th grade students on Wednesday and the 11th and 12th grade students on Thursday. While in both assemblies there were students that found value in what Dr. Slavin had to relate from the IHS survey and research, the information seemed much more salient to the older students. Unfortunately, most of the students were not terribly surprised about the anxiety and depression numbers.

Teacher Talk: Dr. Slavin spoke to approximately 30 teachers, as the event was optional. It was an excellent presentation and conversation with very committed and conscientious teachers. It was clear that our teachers feel that this level of stress, anxiety, and depression is not acceptable in our students or our classrooms.

Meeting with the Counselors: Dr. Slavin hosted an afternoon meeting with most of the guidance staff, continuing to discuss the results of the survey and possible steps that can be taken to alleviate the issues.

Afternoon Tea with the District and School Administration: Once again, Dr. Slavin presented the findings and advocated, with research and experience, for changes to be made in the way we educate students. The Superintendent, Dr. Kim Wallace, Assistant Superintendent of Instruction, Debbie Ashmore, and two board trustees, Dianne Jones and Desrie Campbell, along with Mission San Jose Principal, Zack Larson, attended the meeting. Also at the meeting to provide the student view were the three students from the Race to Nowhere Panel. There was true interest and despair from all in attendance at the survey results and it seemed as if there may be some action taken at the district level to begin studying what can be done at Fremont Unified School District for our student's mental health.

Parent Forum: Finally, we ended our day with a Parent Forum that was open to all parents in Fremont Unified School District. We had a good showing and Dr. Slavin, once again, presented the survey findings. There was a passionate, engaging discussion with parents really wanting to know what they can do to help their students. It seems that we know what can be done, the issue is changing the status quo and obtaining buy-in from all parties involved, schools, parents, teachers, and even the students themselves, to commit to doing things differently-in Dr. Slavin's words- "To be brave" for change.

If you are interested to see Dr. Slavin's PowerPoint presentation, it will be uploaded to our website soon (as soon as Dr. Slavin can catch his breath from our whirlwind 2 days!)

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IHS PTSA is excited to announce that Dr. Stuart Slavin will be returning to Irvington High School after 5 years since his initial research project on stress, anxiety, and depression in our teens. Dr. Slavin's research was highlighted in the New York Times by Vicki Abeles, Director and Producer of Race to Nowhere, a documentary depicting the mental health issues facing our teenagers today. Tickets go on sale February 1, 2019.

Dr. Slavin will give 2 assemblies to the students during the day on February 27 and 28, 2019 and be our evening keynote speaker at IHS for parents on the evening of February 28 at 7pm.

Dr. Slavin currently is the Senior Scholar for Well-being at Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education and the former associate dean of curriculum at the St. Louis University Medical School and a researcher on stress and anxiety in teens.