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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This Month in SEL [January 2020]

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

ThisMonthinSEL

A new decade is officially underway and the first month of the year has been absolutely jam-packed with an influx of SEL resources, reports, and events. We are excited to continue to deliver the latest insights and research to your inbox each month throughout 2020 and beyond!

This month in SEL: Transforming Education releases a new toolkit for trauma-informed SEL, the Rennie Center for Education Research & Policy publishes its anual Condition of Education in the Commonwealth report, findings from a national study on how high school students feel at school, SEL4US partners with The Urban Assembly to launch the first International SEL Day… 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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Transforming Education Releases New Toolkit for Trauma-Informed SEL

This research-based educator toolkit is focused on an approach to social-emotional learning (SEL) that seeks to foster youths’ development with practices that support all students while being particularly inclusive of (and responsive to) the needs of children and youth who have experienced or are currently experiencing trauma. Developed with a strengths-based approach, this resource includes a brief overview of the types of adversities that research suggests can have a negative effect on children’s lives as well as offers strategies that educators can use in their classrooms to support students experiencing ACEs and other types of trauma.

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The Rennie Center for Education Research & Policy Publishes 2020 “Condition of Education in the Commonwealth” Report 

The annual report looks at school performance in Massachusetts, highlighting successes while zeroing in on areas in need of improvement. The publication is accompanied by a data dashboard that looks at a range of state-level indicators ofschool performance and highlights disparities in student outcomes based on factors including income and race along with an Action Guide that examines the need fornew ways of measuring student success.

“Educators and state leaders recognize that serving all students well requires focusing on their individual needs, including mental health and social-emotional development as well as academic progress, but our assessment system has not kept pace with these demands.”

-Chad d’Entremont, Executive Director of the Rennie Center

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The Practical Benefits of SEL Programs

Need help making the case for implementing SEL programming in your school? A new brief from CASEL unpacks the potential impact on a student body over time when a school offers an SEL program compared to when it does not offer such a program.

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New Education Doctorate at Sacred Heart Focused On SEL 

One of the first of its kind in the country, the Ed.D. focuses on social, emotional and academic leadership. The program is designed to prepare principals, superintendents and other school leaders in supporting teachers and students as well as becoming experts in the fast-growing field of social-emotional learning. This announcement comes month after Quinnipiac launched an online graduate certificate program in social-emotional learning and school climate.

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Findings From a Large National Survey on High School Students’ Feelings

Co-authors Marc Brackett, Julia Moeller, Zorana Ivcevic and Arielle White investigated students’ feelings at high school in a nation-wide survey of 21,678 US students as well as in a four-week study using experience sampling methodology with 472 students across 5 high schools. The studies found that 75% of the feelings students reported in their responses to open-ended questions were negative. The three most frequently mentioned feelings were tired, stressed, and bored.

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International SEL Day — March 27, 2020

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.

Social emotional learning (SEL) changes lives. Studies show that SEL improves well-being and academic outcomes, builds positive school climate, and provides children with the necessary skills to excel in today’s workforce. Yet, many members of our communities don’t know about SEL yet.

SEL Day is an opportunity to spread the word about the importance and impact of SEL. Working together, we can raise awareness for SEL, bring on new SEL stakeholders, create artifacts that demonstrate SEL in action, share SEL best practices… and more!

Read More >


Other Headlines:

Our 10 Best Articles of 2019

Resources for the year ahead.

As is tradition at Inside SEL, our editors read through the 100+ original research-practice analyses, thought pieces, and interviews that we published this year to bring you 10 of our most thought-provoking and popular picks.

We hope that these ideas will spark renewed discussion, insight, and strategies for your teaching, learning, and leading in 2020.

Thanks, as always, for reading, and Happy New Year!

-The Inside SEL Team 

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The State of SEL in Massachusetts

Jeff Riley on the State of Education in Massachusetts

Teaching SEL Through Chess: An Interview With New Wave Programs Founder Michael Handley

The Case for Integrating STEM and SEL Education

Examining the Aspen Institute’s New SEAD Action Guide

Confident Parents, Confident Kids: Raising Emotional Intelligence in Ourselves and Our Kids

The Role of “Teacher Mindsets” on Student Success

C.B. Community Schools: A New Model for Competency-Based, Trauma-Informed Education

SEL as a Foundation for Equity Work

Monomoy’s Bill Burkhead on Building a “Home Away From Home” for Students


What topics should we cover in 2020?

Help us identify the topics that matter to K-12 educators, parents, district leaders, and researchers! Take this short survey to name the issues of personal and professional interest you think we should include in next year's coverage. What affects your school community? What instruction, management, leadership, and whole-child topics would you like to see? No theme is too big or too niche. Thank you for sharing your thoughts!

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