Below is a view of some of the 2019 SEL Exchange sessions.  Click here to view the full conference program.

Focus Area: Practice

Description

Too often, people in power make decisions without being in dialogue with those impacted by those decisions. At the Student Success Network (SSN), youth, researcher, and practitioner voices are critical to ensuring equity and quality in social and emotional learning (SEL) assessment design and use. In this session, participants will learn SSN’s journey from adult-dominant decision-making to youth-practitioner-researcher partnership as told through the perspectives of both youth and adult facilitators; take a closer look at the key aspects of the SSN model that enable authentic youth-adult partnership; critically examine youth participation at their organizations; and make action commitments focused on youth partnership.

Speakers

Alexandra Lotero - Student Success Network
Sooah Rho - Student Success Network
Omar Khan - Student Success Network

Focus Area

Practice

Description

Join the Providence After School Alliance and Providence Public Library to learn how one community and one rubric are changing a city’s approach towards assessing essential skills in credit-bearing expanded learning opportunities. Additionally, participants will explore how digital badges are connected to the rubric work as a tool for youth to gain ownership of and market their essential skills to colleges and employers. Participants will learn about the successes and challenges of Providence’s work and participate in hands-on activities to consider how this type of partnership-based innovation can be applied in their local community.

Speakers

Emily George - Providence After School Alliance
Kate Aubin - Providence Public Library
Mireille Sturmann - Providence Public Library

Focus Area

Practice

Description

The potential of arts education as a powerful means of developing social and emotional skills is often taken as a given. However, those transformational powers are frequently unsubstantiated and therefore equated with magical thinking. Funded by the Spencer Foundation, Ingenuity and the UChicago Consortium on School Research came together to better understand the evidence behind the claims with a new study to be published in early 2019. Researchers will discuss their theory of action on the role that the arts can play in the social and emotional development of students and the culture of schools. Participants will engage in a movement-based arts experience designed to bring the findings of the research to life. Led by an educator and arts-based SEL program developer who works extensively with Chicago Public Schools, this energizing learning experience will serve as a touchstone for the ideas discussed in the session.

Speakers

Steven Shewfelt - Ingenuity
Margot Toppen - EduMotion
Jenny Nagaoka - UChicago Consortium on School Research

Focus Area

Practice

Description

Join this participatory session to gain insights from Singapore's innovative approach to SEL. Nurturing character, social and emotional well-being, and good citizenship is a significant aspect of schooling in Singapore. In the recent review of Character and Citizenship Education (CCE), the Ministry of Education (MOE) is working on developing a more coherent approach towards CCE, by anchoring various programs and initiatives on a set of "Developmental Milestones," which articulate indicators of development in character, social and emotional well-being, and civic dispositions across five stages of schooling from primary to post-secondary. This hands-on session provides an overview of the process of developing such indicators and how they may be used in schools to gauge the coherence of their CCE efforts.

Speakers

Thavamalar Kanagaratnam - Ministry of Education, Singapore

Focus Area

Practice

Description

Restorative school communities place an emphasis on building and nurturing relationships in classes, schools, and districtwide. This session focuses on the foundational principles of Restorative Justice (RJ) and their connection to the social and emotional learning (SEL) competencies, as well as to Indigenous Principles of Learning. Presenters will share a strategic plan for whole school implementation of RJ, as well as considerations for adopting districtwide RJ initiatives. Community-building circles are one of the most powerful tools of RJ, and session attendees will engage in a participatory circle experience that reflects the core principles of SEL.

Speakers

Ian Robertson - Coquitlam School District - SD43
Laurie Ebenal - Coquitlam School District - SD43
Darcy Ellis - Coquitlam School District - SD43

Focus Area

Practice

Description

“I’m not a social worker” and “I never learned this in grad school” are common refrains among teachers faced with taking on SEL. They may agree it is a good idea but feel at a loss for how to do it. This session will share an SEL practices observation tool and associated practice-based coaching model that helps teachers understand evidence-based SEL practices, build confidence, and practice new skills. Participants will learn about the importance of SEL practices in the classroom, have a chance to practice using the tool, and explore the implementation of a coaching model in a rural school in Western, New York.

Speakers

Elizabeth Devaney - Children's Institute
Christine Merle - Children's Institute
Lynn M. Lubecki - Children's Institute
Deborah Leh - Wheatland-Chili Central School District

Focus Area

Practice

Description

Participate in this session to examine the impact of racism and inequity on students’ opportunities to thrive in school. Research confirms that black and brown students are negatively impacted by adult attitudes and behaviors, as well as systems and structures that produce inequities in classrooms and buildings. Engage with colleagues in a world café to reflect on the critical role of adult SEL competence in creating equity in school communities. Understand the importance of modeling the five core SEL competencies for students and families and learn how shifting attitudes and behaviors toward students facilitates the positive relationship-building that is critical to their success.

Speakers

Caryn Curry - Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital, Center for Childhood Resilience
Tara Gill - Lurie Children's Hospital, Center for Childhood Resilience; Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University
Carmen Holley - Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital, Center for Childhood Resilience
Faith Summersett-Williams - Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital, Center for Childhood Resilience

Focus Area

Practice

Description

What does authentic, comprehensive integration of SEL competencies look like in the secondary classroom? In this dynamic and interactive session, unpack a classroom “snapshot” of how a teacher naturally embeds social and emotional learning competencies into an academic lesson. Explore a set of Learning and Life Competencies (LLCs) for Secondary School, College, and Career Success that seamlessly integrates into five classroom learning domains: positive personal relationships; organizing the learning environment; content design, learning tasks, and protocols; academic support; and restorative and accountable discipline. LLCs encompass four social-emotional skill sets: self-awareness, self-management, and social and academic efficacy, and include specific target behaviors. Learn and experience evidenced-based strategies to cultivate these LLCs (e.g., self-regulation, cooperation, organizing to learn) in ways that are academically relevant, developmentally informed, and culturally responsive.

Speakers

Michele Tissiere - Engaging Schools

Focus Area

Practice

Description

Emotions matter. They inform our thinking and decisions, the quality of our relationships, our physical and mental health, and our creativity and everyday performance. In this presentation, international SEL expert, Marc Brackett will discuss the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence's research on the “emotional state” of our nation’s children and adults, describe an updated theory of emotional intelligence, including how emotional intelligence benefits people’s lives, and provide an overview of RULER, an evidence-based, systemic approach to embedding the principles, skills, and practices of social and emotional learning into schools and districts around the globe. Participants also will learn practical tools to develop emotional intelligence to achieve greater personal and professional success.

Speakers

Marc Brackett - Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence

Focus Area

Practice

Description

During this workshop, research and experiential knowledge about the practices that support students’ healing, build their resilience, and foster compassion in the classroom will be explored. Participants will learn about the effects of trauma on body and mind and how to recognize them in students’ behavior. Trauma-sensitive practices will be presented. Participants will learn to connect the dots between mindfulness, compassion, and resilience. Guided by three national experts, educators and leaders will explore easy-to-use, practical activities to hone the skills needed to cultivate self-compassion and to create a compassionate learning environment.

Speakers

Meena Srinivasan - Transformative Educational Leadership (TEL)
Wendy Baron - Co-Founder and Chief Officer, SEL, Emerita, New Teacher Center; Current: Independent Consultant/Coach for Social, Emotional, and Cognitive Development
Patricia (Tish) Jennings - University of Virginia

Focus Area

Practice

Description

Learn how one culturally diverse school with high poverty and high ACES addresses the schoolwide social-emotional needs of their students. Sky Oaks Elementary impacts culture and climate through targeted interventions using Conscious Discipline, Mind Up, Move Mindfully, and the use of DESSA in progress monitoring. Data shows a positive impact on academic achievement and social and emotional learning. Navigate the journey of implementing universal SEL practices, applying Tiers I-III evidence-based strategies, analyzing data, and monitoring progress. Seasoned educators give an honest view of what worked and what adaptations improved student engagement, parent involvement, and staff buy-in.

Speakers

Holly Schultz - Sky Oaks Elementary-ISD 191 Burnsville-Eagan-Savage
Jon Bonneville - Sky Oaks Elementary in ISD 191 Burnsville-Eagan-Savage, MN

Focus Area

Practice

Description

The incidence of mental health issues in children continues to increase at alarming rates. Schools have a unique opportunity to provide the supports necessary to build student resilience so that they can not only cope effectively with the demands of school but build the foundation for a lifetime of improved health and mental health outcomes. Drawing upon research from brain science, social sciences and education and 30 years of practice within therapeutic school settings, this engaging workshop will help participants see student complex mental health issues through a lens that is both simple and empowering. Join to explore practical interventions that create connected, regulated, and trauma-informed communities that build resilience in students and reduce the impact of mental health issues in schools.

Speakers

Doug Bolton - Northern Suburban Special Education District

Focus Area

Practice

Focus Area: Research

Description

In this session, school and district leaders and SEL implementation teams will learn the value of assessing students SEL competencies, how educators can determine which available SEL competency assessments are right for them, and how they can best use data from assessments. Jointly developed and facilitated by members of the RAND Assessment Finder team and the SEL Assessment Work Group (AWG), this session gives participants the opportunity to build on tools and resources disseminated by both the RAND and AWG teams and discuss best practices that apply across SEL frameworks and competencies. Participants will engage with best-in-class examples from the field of how SEL assessments are being used effectively in practice.

Speakers

Laura Hamilton - RAND Corporation
Jeremy Taylor - The Possible Project
Katie Buckley - Transforming Education
Jon Schweig - RAND Corportation

Focus Area

Research

Description

The OECD is conducting an international study assessing the social and emotional skills of 10- and 15-year-old students in a number of cities and countries around the world, identifying the conditions and practices that foster or hinder the development of these critical skills. Join this session to get acquainted with leading international research efforts in the area of assessment and development of social and emotional skills in school-age children. Learn about innovative study designs, assessment methods, and other similar OECD projects aiming to assess social and emotional skills of children and adults. Participants will learn about a wide spectrum of contextual factors that hinder or promote student skill development and collaborate on ways they can be addressed through policy and practice.

Focus Area

Research

Description

This symposium offers a framework for integrating socio-emotional, identity, and cognitive development supporting wholistic resilience among minoritized youth living in poverty. These foundational developmental dimensions unfold together. Thus learning environments must address them in tandem with supports stretching across ecological settings (family, school, community, peer social networks), with supports coordinated and responsive to basic human as well as unique challenges with which youth must wrestle and learn to productively resist. Constructions of race, ethnicity, gender, class, and ability are foundational to how systems support positive youth development. National expert presenters will offer practical illustrations of educational programs taking up these principles in diverse settings, addressing the multiple dimensions of youth development, not isolated to socio-economic status. Studies that will be discussed take place across diverse settings from schools to districts, including diverse ethnic populations, addressing the needs of youth and adults.

Speakers

Carol Lee - Northwestern University
Na'ilah Suad Nasir - Spencer Foundation and UC Berkeley
Janeen Lee - Chicago Public Schools

Focus Area

Research

Description

This session examines how understanding the longitudinal development of social and emotional learning (SEL) skills in elementary and middle school can provide insights into achievement gaps and whether students are on track for high school graduation. By highlighting research findings from a district-research partnership between Santa Ana Unified School District (SAUSD), a member of the California Office to Reform Education (CORE) Districts Initiative, and NWEA, an assessment nonprofit, presenters will candidly discuss how districts and researchers can come together to address pressing questions around how to best support students’ social-emotional development. Participants will collaborate with presenters and each other to generate guiding principles on how to deepen SEL-based research-practice partnerships

Speakers

Jim Soland - NWEA
Megan Kuhfeld - NWEA
Sonia Llamas - Santa Ana Unified School District

Focus Area

Research

Description

This session will focus on research-based strategies for making social and emotional learning broadly accessible and effective in routine practice. Geared for education leaders working at all levels, this workshop will progress through five different processes for taking SEL to scale: 1) building coalitions, 2) articulating principles, 3) conducting assessments, 4) selecting and implementing interventions, and 5) striving for continuous improvement. Participants will discuss incorporating these research-based strategies into social and emotional learning initiatives locally and nationally, illuminating opportunities and challenges, and building collaborative solutions for continuous improvement.

Speakers

Valerie Shapiro - University of California, Berkeley
Juyeon Lee - University of California, Berkeley

Focus Area

Research

Description

Join this session to explore using the continuous improvement strategy of Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA) to implement a SEL reform in 30 high schools in the Broward County Public Schools, the sixth-largest school district in the United States. Participants will engage in two PSDA cycles and learn about Personalization for Academic and Social Emotional Learning, a systemic approach to high school reform, and its implementation, including promises and challenges associated with the approach.

Speakers

Stacey Rutledge - Florida State University
Marisa Cannata - Vanderbilt University
Norman Merrifield - 808 Education
Tameka King - Broward County Public Schools

Focus Area

Research

Focus Area: Policy

Description

Join the Chicago Public Schools’ Office of Social and Emotional Learning as they share the policies and SEL support model that has resulted in significant reductions in the use of punitive discipline practices in Chicago schools. Participants will explore current district-level and school-based efforts to reduce inequitable discipline practices, including changing policies and promoting SEL-based best practices. Learn continuous improvement strategies that maintain an equity-focused approach to supporting school-level restorative practitioners and experience activities that form part of the professional development Chicago’s SEL team provides for school disciplinarians.

Speakers

Benjamin McKay - Chicago Public Schools
Laura Hurwitz - Chicago Public Schools

Focus Area

Policy

Description

The federal Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) gives states the opportunity to create new approaches to school accountability and continuous improvement that address the whole child. With ESSA plans complete, states, districts, and schools need to figure out how to successfully implement them. An expert panel will offer guidance and resources to state, district, and school policymakers and practitioners on how to implement high-quality supports for educators that are informed by data. We will draw upon the examples of several states and districts to highlight successful practices. Presenters will address common implementation challenges and how they can be overcome.

Speakers

Hanna Melnick - Learning Policy Institute
Victoria Blakeney - Renton School District
Laura Davidson - Washoe County School District
Charlene Russell-Tucker - Connecticut State Department of Education

Focus Area

Policy

Description

How might state leaders consider the administrative and legislative policies that promote, advance, and/or prevent alignment in social, emotional, and academic learning for young people? Learn together with the statewide afterschool networks that are working in all 50 states to advance policy, funding, and quality for afterschool and summer learning programs. In this session, network leaders from Alaska, California, and Washington will share policy examples that help align in- and out-of-school learning to help young people thrive. The Afterschool Alliance will share opportunities in ESSA and Child Care and Development Block Grants and other federal policies for states to advance SEL in out-of-school time programs. Participants will leave with resources to make the case to their state policymakers.

Speakers

Thomas Azzarella - Alaska Afterschool Network
David Beard - School's Out Washington/Washington ELO Network
Dan Gilbert - Afterschool Alliance
Tiffany Gipson - California Afterschool Network

Focus Area

Policy

Description

What could education look like if it was intentionally designed around what we know from science about how children learn and develop? It would be informed by knowledge of the developing brain, designed to achieve equity and enable all youth to thrive. It would also ensure that relationships, experiences, social and emotional learning, cultural competence, and expert instruction valued the identity and abilities of children to unleash their full potential. Join experts from the Science of Learning and Development Initiative to explore how recent groundbreaking scientific discoveries can inform the policy conditions to support SEL and equity for all students. Participants will collaborate in groups and receive tools and resources that will enable them to take their learning back to their local contexts and do the work of designing practical policy solutions rooted in science.

Speakers

Joaquin Tamayo - EducationCounsel LLC/SoLD Initiative
Jennifer DePaoli - Learning Policy Institute
Amy Nicholson -
Carolyne Quintana - Bronxdale High School NYCDOE

Focus Area

Policy

Focus Area: Communications

Description

The Individualized Education Plan (IEP) process is intended to utilize collaboration to support each child in meeting their full potential. The deficit language often present in IEPs shifts the collaborative process away from a strengths-based approach and creates social and emotional parental stress and diminished parental involvement with the IEP process, all to the detriment of the student we intend to serve. In this session, participants take the perspective of a parent navigating a deficit-based system and experience its emotional impact on the parental mindset. We hope to begin answering the question “How can a shift in language choice better support social and emotional engagement for all stakeholders and ultimately improve student and family well-being?”

Speakers

Anne Childers - Pajaro Valley Unified School District
Jason Davis - Millersville University

Focus Area

Communication

Description

Providing equitable opportunities for developing young people’s social, emotional, and academic growth is challenging enough; talking about it can be even harder. Equity can mean different things to different people, and depending where you live, terms like “social and emotional learning” may be embraced or shunned. In this facilitated conversation, engage with expert presenters and other participants to consider different frames for equity and SEL as you discuss your own community needs. Find specific strategies that will work for your context through exploring a suite of SEL-focused communications tools that explicitly and implicitly reference equity and the organization or district goal to provide equitable outcomes.

Speakers

Terri Ferinde - Collaborative Communications
Laveta Wills-Hale - Arkansas Out of School Network
Richard Daniel - College Success Arizona

Focus Area

Communication

Description

Michigan has embraced SEL across the state and in many facets of education: from Early Childhood initiatives to K-12 implementation and now into the Higher Education arena. Support for SEL is strong and widespread across the state. State education associations, business organizations and legislators as well as districts have demonstrated a commitment to SEL. Attend this interactive and dynamic session and learn how stakeholders from all those perspectives were engaged, offered input, and gained a sense of commitment to statewide SEL. All attendees will leave with proven engagement ideas and communication resources to put to work in their state.

Speakers

Dina Rocheleau - Ferndale Public Schools
Lauren Kazee - Michigan Department of Education

Focus Area

Communication