This Month in SEL [May 2020]

A curation of the top SEL headlines, research & insights.

ThisMonthinSEL

This month in SEL: CASEL shares actionable recommendations to help school leadership teams plan for the social-emotional needs of all students and adults during the summer and eventual transition back into classrooms, Panorama Education launces a new series of free summer virtual learning sessions focused on SEL, the Aspen Institue releases policy recommendations to support social, emotional, and academic development in the pandemic era… and more!

Thank you for reading This Month in SEL. This newsletter is free, so feel free to share it. To access our curated list of resource for educators, parents and school communities related to COVID-19, click here.

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New CASEL Brief on Reopening and Renewing School Communities 

In this brief, CASEL shares actionable recommendations to help school leadership teams plan for the social-emotional needs of all students and adults during the upcoming transition into summer and the beginning of the new school year. The resource, titled: Leveraging the Power of Social and Emotional Learning As You Prepare to Reopen and Renew Your School Community, comes in advance of comprehensive guidance scheduled for release in late June.

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Panorama Education to Host “Celebrating Resilience: A Summer Series”

This summer, join a virtual community of more than 10,000 practitioners, school leaders and district administrators as the education world works together to serve our students in today’s unique context, prepare our schools for what comes next, and celebrate the resilience of our communities.

As part of Celebrating Resilience: A Summer Series, the team at Panorama Education will be hosting free virtual learning sessions, including weekly:

  • Expert Q&As with district and school leaders;

  • Live Workshops featuring social-emotional learning experts, and;

  • Virtual Meet-Ups to allow individuals in similar roles to connect and share experiences.

Read More & Register >


New Policy Recommendations from the Aspen Institute

This publication includes ten examples of concrete actions that state leaders can pursue now and through the 2020-21 school year and legislative sessions to develop, maintain, and strengthen the crucial connections and relationships that are necessary for learning.

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Building Positive Conditions for Learning at Home: Strategies for Families

Developed by the American Institutes for Research (AIR), this portral includes a set of strategies and resources that parents can use to create a supportive learning space at home, including tools in both English and Spanish.

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Free SEL Curriculum & Programs to Support E-Learning

CASEL’s SEL Providers Council — a group of organizations providing social-emotional learning curriculum, activities and lesson plans — are providing free resources and curriculum to support e-learning efforts across the country. This webpage includes a listing of all providers and their free content.

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This Month in SEL [April 2020]

A curation of the top SEL headlines, research & insights.

ThisMonthinSEL

This month in SEL: Jessica Minahan on how to maintain connections and reduce anxiety while schools are closed, Panorama Education offers a new series of surveys to support schools with understanding how students, families and teachers are adjusting distance learning, a team of scientists at the RAND Corporation share tips for keeping students engaged during school closures... and more!

Thank you for reading This Month in SEL. This newsletter is free, so feel free to share it. If you want to receive our monthly e-newsletter version of this, click here to subscribe.

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Maintaining Connections and Reducing Anxiety While School is Closed

Seemingly overnight, the world changed. Teachers and school leaders have had to revamp their entire instructional systems with, in many instances, only a day's notice. To say many of us are experiencing whiplash, disorientation, and anxiety is an understatement.  Students are feeling it, too; it's highly likely that during a pandemic that heavily impacts everyday life, levels of anxiety in children and teens are even higher, and the possibility of subsequent trauma greater.

In these unprecedented times, teachers are rising to the occasion creatively and quickly to shift to remote learning amidst school closures. This piece from Jessica Minahan -- a behavior analyst, special educator, and international consultant to schools -- is full of actionable strategies for fostering a sense of connectedness with students virtually and helping to reduce student (and adult) anxiety amidst school closures.

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CASEL Offers Free Weekly Webinars As Part of "CASEL CARES" Initiative

As the country and the world absorb the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19), our interconnectedness has never been more clearly on display. SEL offers a powerful means to support one another – children and adults – during this challenging time. Now, more than ever, we understand how important it is to demonstrate empathy and resilience, build relationships across distance, and call upon our collective resolve to strengthen our schools and our communities.

CASEL CARES is a new initiative that connects the SEL community with experts to address how SEL can be most helpful in response to today’s circumstances. In addition to a growing resource list, CASEL is offering weekly webinars with experts in the field of SEL who are sharing advice and guidance during this difficult time.

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Panorama Education Introduces New Distance Learning Surveys

With the rapid shift to distance learning this spring, community needs are greater than ever. Yet, it's arguably more difficult than ever before to target resources to those who need them most.

To help support districts in their efforts to support students, families, and educators, Panorama Education launched a new, comprehensive set of surveys to assist with gathering (and taking action on) feedback regarding distance learning. These surveys are designed to help districts understand and address: (1) teacher and staff feedback about personal and professional needs, student engagement, and family communication; (2) student needs in terms of distance learning, well-being and SEL, and; (3) family and community needs.

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CHECKLIST: Building Developmental Relationships During the COVID-19 Crisis

Research indicates that when young people experience developmental relationships with parents, educators, youth program staff, and other adults their outcomes are better, their risk behaviors are lower, and they are more likely to be on the path to thrive in life. This checklist from the Search Institute outlines why staff in schools and youth programs do not need to and should not stop seeking to build developmental relationships with young people while they are at home during the nation’s response to the COVID-19 crisis and covers how to help young people weather this storm.

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ANALYSIS: How to Keep Students Engaged and Tend to Their Social-Emotional Health During School Closures

A schools across the country close, many are looking to online models for sustaining instruction. Parents, policymakers and others have numerous concerns about the resulting effects on academic learning, child care, food security and the financial implications for staff whose positions become unnecessary during closures.

One additional concern that educators should consider as the crisis continues is the likely effect of these changes on students’ social and emotional well-being.

This article -- authored by a team of scientists and policy researchers at the RAND Corporation -- includes some recommendations for school staff and leadership to consider with regards to keeping students engaged and supporting their social and emotional health during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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This Month in SEL [March 2020]

A curation of the top SEL headlines, research & insights.

ThisMonthinSEL

This month in SEL: the global social-emotional learning community comes together to celebrate the first annual International SEL Day, various organizations step-up to provide support for parents and educators during school closures, CharacterStrong announces an April virtual summit on educating the whole child... and more!

Thank you for reading This Month in SEL. This newsletter is free, so feel free to share it. If you want to receive our monthly e-newsletter version of this, click here to subscribe.

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The Global Education Community Celebrates International SEL Day

Back in January, The Urban Assembly and SEL4US invited communities across the world to celebrate the importance of social emotional learning (SEL) on the first annual International SEL Day this past Friday, March 27.

This momentous day saw social media posts reach nearly 2 million individuals, including support from actor Bryan Cranston and participation from 15 countries -- from the United States to Kuwait to Guatemala to Brazil. It was amazing to see so many people, schools, organizations and influencers come together to raise awareness for the impact and influence of social-emotional learning, and we look forward to supporting the second annual event next March!

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Organizations Support Parents & Educators During School Closures

As the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) continues to spread, schools around the world are rapidly pivoting to support children’s health and well-being. As districts shift to online learning, parents, educators and school leaders are searching for ways to continue prioritizing children’s social and emotional development at home.

The month of March saw numerous organizations within the field of social-emotional learning rise to the occasion and provide free resources, professional development, and guidance to parents, educators, and children in need. A few highlights include:

In these times of fear and uncertainty, it is energizing and inspiring to see the education community come together to find ways to support our students.

You can read our full list of social-emotional learning resources for parents, educators and school communities related to COVID-19 here >


CharacterStrong To Host Virtual Whole Child Summit in April

From April 13 to 24, CharacterStrong will be hosting an online conference focused on social-emotional learning: The Whole Child Virtual Summit. The event will include 10 total days of free video content, with keynote sessions from experts such as Angela Duckworth, Akil Ross, Amy Fast, and Clayton Cook.

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Learn More & Register Here >


STUDY: Boosting Soft Skills Is Better Than Raising Test Scores

In a large study of more than 150,000 students in all 133 of Chicago’s public high schools, a team of education researchers calculated that schools that build social-emotional qualities such as the ability to resolve conflicts and the motivation to work hard are getting even better short-term and long-term results for students than schools that only boost test scores. The schools that develop soft skills produced students with higher grades, fewer absences and fewer disciplinary problems and arrests in high school. Later, the students who attended these high schools graduated and went to college in higher rates.

“What we’re showing is that schools that actually cause kids to become more gritty, those kids tend to be likely to persist more in college.”

-- Kirabo Jackson, Economist at Northwestern University

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SEL Resources for Coping with COVID-19

Please consider contributing to our list of resources.

As the COVID-19 coronavirus continues to spread, schools around the world are rapidly pivoting to support children’s health and well-being. As districts shift to online learning, parents, educators and school leaders are searching for ways to continue prioritizing children’s social and emotional development at home.

Our team at Inside SEL has put together an initial list of resources, blog posts and guides to help cope during this volatile and difficult time. Our intention is to continue to add to the list as we come across more relevant content.

SEL Resources List

We encourage our readership to please consider sharing resources that they have created and/or come across here so we can expand our shared knowledge and support as many individuals as possible.

Contribute Resources

Thank you for your time and consideration, and stay safe.

-Nick Woolf, Founder & Editor-in-Chief

This Month in SEL [February 2020]

A curation of the top SEL headlines, research & insights.

ThisMonthinSEL

This month in SEL: a new online course in SEL from The Friday Institute, Panorama Education announces its expansion into college/career/life readiness, CASEL releases a new toolkit for Superintendents, UC Berkeley launches a free online SEL resource for education professionals … and more!

Thank you for reading This Month in SEL. This newsletter is free, so feel free to share it. If you want to receive our monthly e-newsletter version of this, click here to subscribe.


Greater Good in Education: A New Online SEL Resource from UC Berkeley

The Greater Good Science Center at UC Berkeley has launched Greater Good in Education, a new online resource that provides educators, school leaders, school mental health providers, and other education professionals with free, research-based strategies and practices for the social, emotional, and ethical development of students and the adults who work with them. The free site synthesizes the top insights and best practices from science, education programs, and practitioners.

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CASEL Releases a New Toolkit for Superintendents

School and districts leaders play a critical role in the success of SEL. After all, SEL isn’t just for the classroom.

Developed by CASEL in collaboration with AASA, the new Districtwide SEL Essentials for Superintendents toolkit provides support and 10 high-leverage superintendent actions to lead a districtwide SEL movement.

“SEL has the potential to create deep, systemic improvements in a school district, impacting school engagement, attendance, academic achievement, graduation rates, and student readiness for college, career, and civic engagement… This focus area guides districts in building the support and plans they need to ensure SEL can thrive.”

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The Friday Institute Offers An Online “SEL for Educators” Course

The team at the Friday Institute, along with a group of experts, researchers, and practitioners, developed a free online course with the goal of helping individuals build their own foundational understanding of how social and emotional learning (SEL) skills are essential to, and inseparable from, student learning. The course is designed to work in multiple ways: it complements existing district- and school-wide programs but can also be used in the absence of these programs to support educators in weaving SEL both explicitly and implicitly throughout academic instruction and the school day.

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CASEL Announces a New “SEL Providers Council”

More than 60 organizations have joined the new SEL Providers Council, an effort overseen by CASEL in close partnership with its members. The council brings together providers of SEL programming and assessment for collective learning, thought leadership, and action. The overall goal is aimed at advancing quality social-emotional learning implementation and strengthening student and youth well-being.

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Panorama Education Launches New College & Career Readiness Tools

Panorama Education, a leader in developing solutions for K-12 districts that help educators improve student outcomes and support the whole child, announced the launch of college and career readiness tools in its Student Success platform.

With Panorama’s solution, school districts now have a cohesive way to define and track how students are progressing towards college and career readiness. The solution seeks to empower educators to address key challenges in preparing students for life after graduation, including the demand for 21st century job and life skills, low college persistence rates, and a widespread need for remedial coursework in college.

“As a nation, we’re seeing all-time high graduation rates, but at the same time seeing that there is a gap between the knowledge and skills that students possess when they graduate from high school and what they will need to be successful in college and the workforce… when we think about the success we want to help students achieve, we can’t only help them pass their classes, attend school, and engage in positive behavior. We have to think about helping our district partners prepare students for college and careers.”

— Aaron Feuer, Co-Founder & CEO of Panorama Education

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David Adams on How To Get Involved on International SEL Day

The Urban Assembly and SEL4US invite communities across the globe to celebrate the importance of social emotional learning (SEL) on the first annual International SEL Day on March 27, 2020. Inside SEL is proud to be an official SEL Day partner and will be helping to spread the word ahead of this momentous event.

Earlier this month, our team connected with David Adams — who serves as the Director of Social-Emotional Learning at The Urban Assembly and sits on the Board of Directors at CASEL — to learn more about David’s background and career path, the origin story of International SEL Day, and how you can get involved.

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