LA County Department of Probation


The Los Angeles Department of Probation was selected as the required partner for local juvenile justice due to the level of involvement of the probation department with the students, staff, and parents of ERUSD. ERUSD actively participates in the Department of Probation’s Community Early Identification Program and works closely with the Department of Probation to reduce recidivism rates and support students who are on probation to expand participation during school hours and after-school opportunities. The Los Angeles Department of Probation support for the Safe Schools/Healthy Students Grant Initiative includes: 1) serving on the Core Management Team in planning, management, and implementation; policy making; and coordination of services and resources, 2) contracting with ERUSD to increase the number of Deputy Probation Officers by one, 3) working closely with ERUSD and ERUSD School Police in developing and supporting the newly developed truancy program, and 4) working with the SS/HS Project Director and community partners in the development and delivery of positive youth development activities.

Debbie NelsonDebbie Nelson exemplifies the level of expertise found on the Core Management Team that is overseeing ERUSD ’s Safe Schools/Healthy Students grant initiative. She brings a wealth of experience as a Director of the Los Angeles County Probation Department. For over 20 years, Debbie has served as a public administration professional and she holds a Master's of Public Administration degree from California State University, Long Beach.

For the past 9 years, Debbie has held the highly charged position of overseeing the Specialized Enforcement Operations programs which consists of high profile, politically focused work with armed probation officers who act in collaboration with policing agencies to remove probationers who threaten community safety; the countywide Intensive Gang Supervision Program which consists of probation officers charged with monitoring high-risk, gang-involved probationers; and the Juvenile Justice Crime Prevention Act – Cluster 1 Programs which allows for probation officers to be placed in schools, parks and housing developments to focus on monitoring and providing services for probation youth and non-probation youth and their families.

ERUSD is privileged to have such a consummate professional on board to further its vision of the Safe Schools/Healthy Students grant initiative. Her team-building skills are greatly admired along with her interpersonal, organizational and strategic planning abilities. She possesses a number of awards and is a member of several professional organizations, but she says the ones that mean the most are her memberships in the National Honor Society for Public Affairs & Administration and Delta Sigma Theta professional sorority.

Debbie Nelson is a busy lady not only professionally but also personally; she and her husband, Richard, are the proud parents of a 20-month-old son. Before the birth of their little guy, Debbie says she enjoyed international travel, fine dining and snuggling up with a good John Grisham novel; however, these days her reading material is more likely to be something from Dr. Seuss or parenting magazines. Leisure time traveling now means a walk to the park, and catching up on sleep is near the top of the list for this mom! Debbie confesses that being a mother is her greatest life achievement and every moment is a delight.

Debbie points to a Yoruba Proverb as her guiding motto and it could speak for all District professionals and personnel: “With your hands you make your success, with your hands you destroy success”.




Los Angeles County Department of Probation
For Additional information contact Jeff Fitchett at