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What is Stamford’s approach to Social and Emotional Learning?

The social and emotional learning (SEL) approach used in Stamford supports the district mission to provide an education that cultivates productive habits of mind, body, and heart in every student. Supporting the development of students’ social and emotional competence (Heart) is one of the foundation blocks of the District, inextricably tied to academic success. The District believes that to succeed academically and become empathic, engaged, and ethical citizens, students need opportunities to develop social and emotional competence. The District’s SEL approach fosters resiliency, responsibility, supportive relationships, and reflection and provides opportunities for students to develop and practice important social and emotional learning competencies. The District incorporates SEL at a system level to build a foundation to support academic and lifelong achievement for students.  In order to promote the social and emotional development of all students, the District will pursue program development in the following areas: 

  1. Classroom and School-Wide Programming: Implement evidence-based, age and culturally appropriate classroom instruction and school-wide strategies that teach social and emotional skills, promote optimal mental health, and prevent risky behaviors for all students. 

  2. Staff Development and Training: Provide staff development to all school personnel, to strengthen adult SEL competencies and capacity and ways to promote it in the classroom. 

  3. Parent and Family Involvement: Provide parents and families with learning opportunities related to the importance of their children’s optimal social and emotional development, and ways to enhance it. 

  4. Community Partnerships: Establish partnerships with diverse community agencies and organizations to assure a coordinated approach to addressing children’s mental health and social and emotional development. 

  5. Early Identification and Intervention: Utilize an assessment system to screen, assess and provide early intervention for students who have significant risk factors for social, emotional, or mental health problems that impact learning. 

  6. Assessment and Intervention: Build and strengthen referral and follow-up mechanisms for providing effective clinical services for children with social, emotional, and mental health issues that impact learning through student and family support services, school based intervention, and school and community linked services and supports.