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Blog Posts -- Solution stories

English teacher, known among students as the “pad bag teacher”, becomes national hero after providing free feminine products for economically disadvantaged female students who can’t afford them (dailyfortworth.com)

Lack of access to sanitary products, menstrual hygiene education, toilets, hand-washing facilities and/or waste management, also known as period poverty, has been an issue for decent number of young females in the past decade, but the situation additionally worsened since the Covid-19 pandemic began leaving almost a quarter of U.S. students struggling to access period products. In the last couple of years, dozens of states tried, but only a few successfully managed to pass bills which will...

STOPit and Sharpen - Trauma-informed technology to improve emotional wellness

Advancing school mental health requires a comprehensive, Multi-Tiered System of Support (MTSS) following Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) best practices. As presented for New Mexico Department of Health clinicians, this case study will outline strategies for improving emotional wellness and advancing behavioral health in schools through trauma-informed technology.

Louisiana Fathers Form 'Dads on Duty' Group to Help Stop Violence at Their Children's High School (people.com)

Have no fear, the dads are here! Michael LaFitte Jr. said he was one of several parents who felt compelled to take action after nearly two dozen students got arrested, suspended, or expelled within three days at Southwood High School in Shreveport, Louisiana, according to Good Morning America . Wanting to find a way to stop the violence, LaFitte Jr. sat down with four other dads in his office and came up with the idea to start a crisis intervention team at their kids' school called " Dads on...

7's HERO: New Boise public charter high school for pregnant, parenting teens opens this week (ktvb.com)

BOISE, Idaho — There is a new high school in Boise for pregnant and parenting teenagers. Cardinal Academy Public Charter School is located on the Salvation Army's recently completed Booth Campus on Emerald Avenue. Cardinal Academy is a free public charter school that offers these students in 9th-12th grade, ages 14-21, the opportunity to get their education and get the support they need to parent while they receive their diploma. "Cardinal is such an amazing resource because they have...

The Nine Facets of a Comprehensive Trauma-Informed School Organization

In this article, the author makes the case that school organizations need to adopt a universal precaution approach for addressing trauma, and the systemic changes required to do so. With this approach, every adult has the potential for a positive impact on each child in his or her care. (The entire PDF document is attached and can be downloaded.)

Appalachia’s Front Porch Network Is a Lifeline (yesmagazine.org)

More than half of all children in Appalachian Ohio receive free or reduced-price lunch , as reported by the Ohio PTA in 2013. At some elementary schools, the participation rate is almost 75% . In many cases, food distributed to Appalachian children at school feeds a family; thanks to programs such as Blessings in a Backpack, some children go home for the weekends with backpacks of shelf-stable food like canned tuna and peanut butter, designed to help out the whole household. School bus...

Seven Ways to Welcome LGBTQ Families As Young People Head Back to School [HRC]

By Guest contributor, Aug 5, 2019 for the Human Rights Campaign Post submitted by Kimmie Fink, Welcoming Schools consultant As educators head back to school, it’s important to remember they will be serving not just a classroom full of new students, but also families. The Family Equality Council estimates that between 2 million and 3.7 million children under the age of 18 have an LGBTQ parent -- a group that has typically been underserved, if not sometimes ignored, in school settings. The...

Trauma is Messy

I will always remember the day that, as a student teacher, I watched as a student entered my second-grade room covered in blood. After quickly establishing that he was not injured, we learned that the blood was that of his brother who had been shot the night before. No parents were around that night, so this second grader became the sole caregiver of his bleeding brother. My student would never be the same. We didn’t care about grades or test scores. We just knew that this moment would...

How Schools Can Help Teachers Understand and Address Racial Bias (kqed.org)

As first period gets underway at Cambridge Street Upper School, veteran math teacher Stephen Abreu leads a small-group discussion. But the conversation isn’t about middle school algebra, and Abreu isn’t talking to students. Seven of his fellow teachers, nearly all of them white women, are sitting across from each other talking about race, white privilege and how their own biases affect their relationships with students. Each of Cambridge Street’s staff members participate in meetings just...

Schools’ Most Untapped Resource (ssir.org)

Green Schoolyards America connects ecological innovation with education, equity, and community engagement. What are we growing in our garden?” Wanda Stewart asks a class of third graders at Hoover Elementary School in Oakland, California. The room erupts with a garden medley: “Watermelon!” “Cherries!” “Spinach!” “Eggplant!” Then someone yells, “Mangoes!” and Stewart, Hoover’s gardening teacher, holds up her hand. “Can we grow mangoes in California?” she asks. “Mangoes need to grow in a...

Navigating the Holidays for Students with ACEs

Over the last few weeks, I have had countless conversations with schools about the uptick of behavioral issues this time of year. Many educators are recognizing that students with ACE’s have a tough time around the holidays, but very few people know what to do about it. While there is no one-size-fits-all answer, below are the top three pieces of advice I have been sharing. Avoid some of the most common holiday traditions: When we have negative experiences, our brain latches on to everything...

Holiday Stress, Self Care and Mirror Neurons

With Thanksgiving behind us, and the new year looming ahead, we are clearly in the midst of the holiday season. It is easy to focus on our students and their behavior this time of year. However, I would like to turn the focus back on us: the educators, caregivers and administrators. Though it is likely for different reasons than our students, many of us find the holidays to be a rather stressful time. You may be hosting, cooking, traveling, shopping, wrapping, financially strained,...

Poet Linda McCarriston Reads “Hotel Nights With My Mother” (www.billmoyers.com/vimeo) & Note

I used to hate summers and holidays as a kid because it meant too much time at home and too much time, unstructured, with people who weren't safe. For me, that was my biological father, my first step-father and two step-siblings and I didn't hate long breaks and time away from school. I loved September and when Christmas break was over. This isn't a post about what happened to me as a kid. It's a reminder for teachers that home can be hard and what you do, allow, see and witness, even...

RYSE gathering: To promote healing from trauma, institutions need to stop seeing youth as the problem

A young man told clinical therapist Marissa Snoddy recently that when she calls him a leader, she got it all wrong. “He said, ‘I just came from Juvenile Hall,’ I’m not a leader.” But, she said, “We just kept giving him love. And we said, ‘You’re courageous for showing up and being here,’” The very fact that he was there, she explained, showed he was a leader. Snoddy related the anecdote recently for 80 people attending the Trauma and Learning Series launch led by Rising Youth for Social...

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