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Putting Kids First


A new division has been established in JUSD.

Rosa Santos-LeePupil Services manages three JUSD departments - Special Education, Parent Involvement & Community Outreach (PICO), and Educational Equity (formerly Pupil Personnel Services). Leading the division is Rosa Santos-Lee, who has served as the Director of Elementary Education for the past five years.

“I am humbled and honored to be able to serve in this role here in Jurupa,” shared the new Assistant Superintendent. “Even more humbled and honored to work with the three departments I get the opportunity to oversee.”

Mrs. Santos-Lee loves that each department in her division is “all about putting kids at the center.” In fact, before they were moved from Education Services to the division of Pupil Services, the three departments often found themselves overlapping. PICO and Special Education often work closely on mental health services, sharing and providing resources for special education and general education students alike. And equity plays a large role in establishing a successful Special Education Department.

Dr. Karina Becerra-Murillo“Special education is all about equity - providing students with equal opportunities regardless of their disability, regardless of their skill set,” shared Dr. Karina Becerra-Murillo, Director of Special Education. Dr. Becerra-Murillo believes the Pupil Services division will help all three departments better serve JUSD students. 

Jose Campos, Director of PICO, agrees. “When our different departments work collaboratively to address the needs of our students, we are able to do so more effectively, more efficiently,” he shared. “Now you have the mind power of three wonderful directors under this division to really problem solve and foresee what those future needs may be. Through this division, you will see great things.”

For Monty Owens, joining a new division also means a new title and a new name for his department. Formerly the Director of Pupil Personnel Services, Mr. Owens looks forward to providing every student “with the resources, the support, and the sense of belonging that they need to be successful” as the Director of Educational Equity. 

Monty Owens“When we use the term educational equity, what we’re really talking about is knowing that students and our families all have different needs, different talents, different life experiences that lead them through our gates at our school,” he said. 

However, Mr. Owens believes these differences should not dictate student success. 

“[Equity means] building relationships knowing what our students need to be successful, then trying to fill those gaps so that they have the best opportunity to reach or exceed their potential,” he said. “Our goal is to have no student walk through a campus gate feeling like they shouldn’t be there or they’re not important.”

Jose CamposThe formation of a new division within JUSD is timely. The majority of Jurupa Unified students have returned to full-time, in-person instruction after more than a year of distance and hybrid learning, and these students will be counting on services that Pupil Services departments can provide. 

“We are most looking forward to the expansion of our behavioral health services,” said Mr. Campos of his department. “We’re [expanding] mental health professionals on every school campus [and] we’re looking forward to keeping them as sustainable services.” 

Added Mrs. Santos-Lee: “Pupil services is a division that removes barriers for students, teachers, and families [in order to] accelerate learning.”

To learn more about Pupil Services, please visit the division's webpage​.