Congresswoman Katie Hill, D-Agua Dulce, speaks to the Resource Coordinator for the Paws Center April Rigo and school Social Worker Cindy Takamoto at Golden Valley High School Friday afternoon. Cory Rubin/The Signal

Hill tours schools in Santa Clarita

Rep. Katie Hill, D-Agua Dulce, toured a number of schools in the Santa Clarita Valley on Friday.

Hill said the purpose of her visiting four schools in a day was to learn about what the local schools are offering and what is going on in the minds and lives of Santa Clarita students.

Congresswoman Katie Hill, D-Agua Dulce, speaks to the Resource Coordinator for the Paws Center April Rigo at Golden Valley High School Friday afternoon. Cory Rubin/The Signal

“I really wanted to have a chance to kind of talk about what are the things that are priorities for students, for educators for parents and how am I going to be able to best advocate for those things in Washington. And, I think it’s so important that right now, as kids are moving onto the next stage in their life, to use my voice however I can to show people what they’re able to accomplish, tell them how much their voice matters and how much we need them to be involved.”

During her tour at Golden Valley, Hill visited with members of the school’s Human Rights Watch Student Task Force Club who handed her a petition with 401 signatures to support changing immigration policy. She also visited with the Golden Valley PAWS Center, which helps campus students, parents and staff by encouraging student success, family health and wellness and parenting support resources.

Hill met with Devin Brown and Aimee Marquez, two Golden Valley students who shared their stories about how the PAWS center has helped them in their lives.

Congresswoman Katie Hill, D-Agua Dulce, speaks to the Human Rights Watch Student Task Force at Golden Valley High School Friday afternoon. Cory Rubin/The Signal

“What they do for kids around school … they’re just very helpful people,” Brown said. “They provide for you and make sure you have everything you need.”

Hill said she was grateful for the opportunity to come and learn about the current issues facing public education in the Santa Clarita Valley.

“If somebody doesn’t know where their next meal is going to come from, or they’re stressed out about something going on with their family or their parents not having the resources (they) need, then they’re not able to be successful in school,” Hil saidl.  

Congresswoman Katie Hill, D-Agua Dulce, takes a picture with the Human Rights Watch Student Task Force at Golden Valley High School Friday afternoon. Cory Rubin/The Signal

“It’s great that this school and our district are on the front end of addressing those needs and thinking of a student as a whole person,” Hill said. “So, how do we (at the federal level) surround this school with the resources to make it as successful as possible?”

“It’s important for our government officials to have the opportunity to see the need we have in our schools, and to be able to support that at a bigger level” said Wendi Johnston, the school’s assistant vice principal. “And not just at one school site, but in all of Southern California, and to know what our needs are.”

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