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Guiding Questions for Using CORE Districts’ Benchmarking Data

Practitioners can use CORE benchmarking data to target resources and supports needed most within their schools and districts. Benchmark data can be used to illuminate strengths within and across schools or grade-levels in order to help identify and scale promising practices; it can help leaders and administrators identify disparities in SE development in order to inform resource allocation; and, it can be used to prioritize student SE development goals and set priorities for the year.  We recommend that you use following set of questions to help guide your use of the CORE benchmark data to unpack your own students’ social-emotional survey data.

SEL: Not a Moment, but a Movement

On May 1, more than 300 educators, researchers, and policymakers gathered for the inaugural exSEL Network conference, titled Social-Emotional Learning: Lessons Learned and Opportunities for Massachusetts, led by Transforming Education, the Rennie Center, and SEL4MA. Participants took part in breakout sessions focused on learning from the experiences of districts putting social-emotional learning policies and practices into place and hearing from experts about SEL supports and strategies.

Global Outreach from Your Seat

“What will your students remember in five years?” was a question asked during one of our professional learning sessions with Transforming Education. Usually when you recall a memory, you associate it with a certain emotion - whether that is happiness, sadness, excitement, or anger. When building lessons for our novels this year, I wanted to focus on that question in my 7th grade English class. What will my students remember from this? What could I teach that would build a deeper connection to their own emotions? That is how I came up with this unexpected yet rewarding experience.

Stop, Collaborate and Listen

Young. Gifted. Black. I remember as a youth hearing others speak of me as an intellectual but completely rough around the edges.  The truth was, I was a high risk student by all measures - I grew up in an impoverished one-parent household in a rough inner city neighborhood where some temptations swallowed other boys like me.  I survived, but by all measures I probably shouldn’t be where I am today - excelling as a successful father, husband, and educator. How did I do it?

A Student’s Experience with Social-Emotional Learning at Idaho’s One Stone

Growing up, I was the epitome of a cookie-cutter kid. I excelled in school, getting straight A´s throughout the entirety of my elementary and junior high career. I played soccer and basketball, participated in track and field, and did triathlons. I became obsessed with trying to be perfect. For all of my time in junior high, I became preoccupied with a trophy that was given out to students with a cumulative GPA of 4.0. I stopped at nothing to get that award and at the time it seemed like it mattered more to me than anything else. Now, that trophy is sitting under my bed collecting dust. Don’t get me wrong -- I am proud of how hard I worked to accomplish what I did. However, after taking a huge leap of faith, my entire view of what success looks and feels like drastically changed.

Supporting our Trans, Non-binary, and Gender Non-Conforming Students through Mindfulness and an Anti-Oppression Framework

Jersey Cosantino, teacher and student of mindfulness studies, explores the ways that educators can offer mindfulness through an anti-oppression lens to our transgender, non-binary, and gender non-conforming students. By integrating mindfulness practice and anti-oppression work, educators can offer students an additional tool to build resilience and foster positive-emotional well being.

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