September 30, 2022
Jay Farrington Confirmed as Director of School Safety
Carrying out Governing Board resolution to protect students from the horrors of human trafficking will be a top priority for the 26-year public safety professional
EL CAJON – The Grossmont Union High School District (GUHSD) Governing Board (Board) called a special meeting Wednesday to confirm Mr. Jay Farrington as its next Director of School Safety. As Director of School Safety, Mr. Farrington – a former San Diego Police Officer and Supervising District Attorney Investigator – will conduct school safety assessments, strengthen security measures, enhance training for staff and students, ensure emergency readiness, and work closely with GUHSD’s law enforcement partners to build an overall culture of safety throughout East County’s high school district.
There is nothing more important than the safety of our students and staff,” said GUHSD Superintendent Mary Beth Kastan. “Jay Farrington’s unique combination of law enforcement, safety, and leadership training experience makes him the ideal leader for our effort to make our schools as safe as possible, and to ensure all of our students can build the best future,” she added.
After being officially confirmed, Mr. Farrington addressed the Board Members, saying “Superintendent Kastan has made it absolutely clear that the safety of our schools is our District’s top priority. Every morning that I wake up will be fiercely dedicated to keeping every one of our students and staff members as safe as possible.”
A top priority for Mr. Farrington will be carrying out a Governing Boardresolution approved Wednesday evening that calls for strengthening procedures, providing training and resources, and putting prevention measures in place to protect GUHSD students from human trafficking. The resolution also calls for establishing San Diego County’s first known school district-based Community Advisory Board for Human Trafficking Prevention.
"As a Board, we are acutely aware that our students are not immune to the threat posed by human traffickers,” said Governing Board President Robert Shield. “Recent incidents of our students being reported as runaways and being subsequently connected to human trafficking has drawn our intense focus. This Board has always acted when we identified threats to student safety, and we’re doing that again tonight with this resolution to take swift action to save children from the horrors of human trafficking,” he added.
Parents and community members attended the board meeting to voice their concerns on the topic of runaway youths and the connection to human trafficking. Several speakers thanked the Governing Board for their leadership on the issue.
Describing the issue as one of “urgent concern” and “requiring immediate attention,” the new Director of School Safety heard the Board and community members clearly. “I’ve appreciated the opportunity to hear your concerns and have taken notes,” Farrington said. “I’ll keep all of these comments in mind as we begin the important work of examining our vulnerabilities and putting every possible protection in place to address those vulnerabilities.” he said.
The Board resolution also calls on the new School Safety Director to provide regular updates on the status of the District’s efforts.
Mr. Farrington begins in his new role immediately. His biographical information and photo are below:
Superintendent Mary Beth Kastan has nominated Mr. Jay Farrington to serve as the Grossmont Union High School District’s next Director of School Safety.
Mr. Farrington served as a member of the United States Navy for eight years and served in the first Gulf War as part of Operations Desert Storm and Desert Shield. He worked as an Avionics Technician and Troubleshooter, and he was also deployed aboard the USS Midway.
After concluding his Navy service, Mr. Farrington’s commitment to protect and serve continued to drive him. He joined the San Diego Police Department where he served as a Police Officer and Detective for 11 years. He worked as a gang detective, SWAT officer, patrol operations supervisor, and as a field training officer who mentored, coached, and evaluated officers who were new to the police force.
In 2007, Mr. Farrington joined the San Diego District Attorney’s Office where he supervised and managed a variety of high-profile investigative units, including major felony crimes, the cybercrime task force, and the extraditions unit. Recognized for his leadership and teaching ability, he was also a program instructor and contributor at the San Diego Regional Leadership Institute for Law Enforcement and has appeared as a Guest Lecturer for the Criminal Justice Department at National University. He concluded his 26-year law enforcement career in March 2022 when he retired from the District Attorney’s office.
In 2019, Mr. Farrington created a unique California Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) accredited Leadership Foundation Course – an experience that inspired the establishment of his own leadership training business through which he provides this course for public safety partners and private industry as a Supervising District Attorney Investigator.
Mr. Farrington earned both his Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice Administration and his Master of Science degree in Organizational Leadership from National University. A testament to how deeply he values education, he earned both of his degrees after concluding his military service while working full time.
Photo: Jay Farrington