Research tells us that cultivating a culture where students feel safe, engaged, and ready to learn is an important factor in their success both inside and outside the classroom. Learn how the Cleveland Metropolitan School District has made notable progress in building this capacity, spurred in part by a tragedy that has become all too common.
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31 Jan 2018
School climate and social and emotional learning (SEL) have often been treated separately by researchers and practitioners, but both are necessary to build healthy schools. This brief reviews research on how positive school climates support SEL and how improved SEL contributes to improved school climate in elementary and secondary schools.
31 May 2017
Competency-based education is an educational approach that focuses on mastery of an expanded set of competencies—rather than seat time—as a measure of student learning. This brief explores how states and districts can define learner competencies that reflect the full range of knowledge, skills, and dispositions necessary for students to achieve college and career readiness.
7 Feb 2017
In the Field
Statewide suspension rates in Michigan were high, and discipline policies in many schools were in direct conflict with its priority of reducing barriers to learning. With support from the Great Lakes Comprehensive Center, the Michigan Department of Education formed the Michigan School Discipline Task Force in 2013, to develop a model policy on reducing suspensions and expulsions using alternative discipline strategies; a revised model student code of conduct; and an online toolkit for schools and districts on how to implement the new policy and code.
21 Oct 2016
Social and emotional skills undergird student success—and mold better citizens. Results from the Collaborating Districts Initiative suggest that even modest investments can pay off for individuals, schools, and society. In this policy brief, Kimberly Kendziora and Nick Yoder share the results of the evaluation and offer policy six recommendations for states and districts implementing SEL initiatives.
6 Oct 2016
The Ten Series
Healthy schools and supportive school environments provide connection, support, engagement, and physical and emotional safety, as well as access to social networks and resources for students. This brief, which evolved from a larger project funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, outlines the central principles needed to support students in an equitable, collaborative, and healthy environment.
13 Dec 2015
How can we better support young people as they develop the knowledge and skills they need to succeed in school, work, and life? That is the question facing in-school educators, afterschool providers, families, policymakers, and the general public. This brief covers the policy context reflecting a growing interest in social and emotional learning and how afterschool and in-school educators can work together.
4 Dec 2015
For educators and employers, understanding the knowledge, attitudes, and skills that ultimately contribute to success in school, work, and life is a priority. Over the past decade, afterschool programs have focused on preparing young people for the workforce by developing good work habits and a strong work ethic; this brief addresses the importance of those programs also teaching social and emotional learning competencies.
27 Jul 2015
During the past 20 years, the afterschool field has been held accountable in varying ways—first, on the ability to provide safe places for young people to spend time while their parents work; then, on success in helping to improve participants’ academic achievement as a supplement to the school day. This brief provides an overview of work done to date both in afterschool and school-based settings to define social and emotional learning, shares recent research on how afterschool programs contribute to the development of these competencies, and offers some next step recommendations to both practitioners and researchers.
31 Mar 2015
Schools need to place a greater emphasis on social and emotional skills for students to prepare them for work and for life. In this policy snapshot, we summarize existing research about the effects of education on students’ social and emotional skills and identify important state and district policy considerations for initiating and integrating social and emotional learning, as well as for preparing and developing teachers and administrators to focus on the whole child.