DASH Partner Update – February 2020

Partner Update banner

Dear Partners,

I am so excited to share with you a newly released series of fact sheets, Adolescent Health: What Works In Schools. The What Works series translates scientific literature and expertise about the most effective approaches for schools to use to reduce adolescent risk for HIV infection, other STDs and unintended pregnancy. What Works provides recommended approaches and evidence-based information that connects the dots from research to program implementation in schools.

As you know, DASH’s program supports the implementation of three strategies in schools to address HIV and STD-related health risks, behaviors, and experiences among students: sexual health education (SHE), sexual health services (SHS), and safe and supportive environments (SSE). These strategies benefit all students and include a focus on promoting protective factors, like school connectedness and parent engagement that address multiple health outcomes, including high-risk substance use, violence victimization, and mental health.

We currently fund 28 local education agencies to implement these strategies and feel strongly about providing tools to those we do not fund to expand the implementation of these strategies. It is our hope that What Works can be used by school health programs across the country to improve adolescent health nationwide. What Works can also be used to demonstrate the effectiveness of SHE, SHS, and SSE, and educate stakeholders about the important role of schools in promoting adolescent health.

I encourage you to explore our What Works fact sheets and to share this information with your stakeholders.


Kathleen A. Ethier, Ph.D.
Director, Division of Adolescent and School Health
National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD and TB Prevention
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

What’s New with DASH?

Updates and Resources
pin icon
Updated LGBTQ Youth Web Pages

DASH’s LGBTQ Youth web pages have been updated to reflect the use of LGBTQ unless referring to data that necessitates a narrower acronym for accuracy. A new terminology page explains how terms associated with sexual and gender identities are used throughout the DASH website.

Newly Released What Works Fact Sheets

What Works fact sheets outline DASH’s evidence-based approach to school-based HIV and STD prevention.

CDC Recommendations for Providing Quality Sexually Transmitted Diseases Clinical Services

This report provides the latest CDC recommendations to U.S. health care providers regarding quality clinical services for sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) for primary care and STD specialty care settings.

book icon

Sexual and Reproductive Health Web Sites: An Analysis of Content for Sexual and Gender Minority Youthexternal icon
This CDC publication analyzed online sexual and reproductive health messages for sexual and gender minority youth (SGMY). Findings show that messages often discussed SGMY youth broadly, with limited acknowledgement of within-group diversity. Messages also addressed many health issues beyond sexual and reproductive health and SGMY-specific topics that were often risk-framed, yet affirmational.

DASH Around Town
pin icon
Connect with DASH staff at these upcoming events.

February 14-16: Dr. Kathleen Ethier will give plenary remarks at Time to THRIVE 2020.

March 11-14: Several DASH staff will present at the Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine’s 2020 Annual Meeting.

  • Drs. Lisa Barrios, Susan Hocevar Adkins, and Natalie Wilkins will present “The Role of School and Family Connectedness in Preventing Violence among Adolescents.”
  • Drs. Michael Underwood, Nancy Brener, and Kymber Williams will present “Connecting Health Care Providers with CDC’s Adolescent Surveillance Data: A Public Health Approach for Transforming Risk to Wellness.”
  • Dr. Michael Underwood will present “Trends in sexual risk behaviors by contraceptive type among high school students – United States, 2007-2017.”

March 17-20: Drs. Catherine Rasberry and Leigh Szucs will present in a session titled “What Youth Need and How Schools Can Help” at the Society of Public Health Education 71st Annual Meeting.

April 13-16: Drs. Nicholas Deputy and Heather Clayton will present, “Addressing Nonmedical Use of Prescription Opioids among Adolescents: Leveraging Schools for Surveillance, Research and Prevention Activities” at the 2020 RX Drug Abuse & Heroin Summit.

Updates from Partners

Healthy Schools Campaign has published a brief that focuses on how to improve children’s physical and behavioral health through the expansion of school-based health services using available Medicaid funds. It provides an accessible overview of student health needs and the work to be done at state and local levels to leverage available funding for physical and mental health services.

This guide, developed by the Society for Public Health Education, provides school health staff and school health teams with initial support for integrating SEL competencies into the WSCC model through a series of simple handouts and suggested tools.

In the Field

San Diego Unified School District created safer and more supportive school environments by developing an online form for students to confidentially report bullying and harassment, and strengthening practices to address reported bullying.

  • March 10: National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day
  • March 20: National Native HIV/AIDS Awareness Day
  • March 23-29: LGBT Health Awareness Week
  • March 30-April 3: National Youth Violence Prevention Week
  • March 30-April 5: National Drug and Alcohol Facts Week
  • April 10: National Youth HIV/AIDS Awareness Day
  • April 12-18: STD Awareness Week