4 Ways to Get Skeptics to Embrace Social-Emotional Learning

Education Week
An increasing number of school districts are incorporating social-emotional learning into or alongside instruction, thanks to a growing awareness of its importance for students. But within school communities, there are still families, teachers, and school leaders who think social-emotional learning is not the job of educators. Some school leaders simply don’t feel they have the time to cover issues around students’ relationships, well-being, and motivation in addition to schoolwork. There is a constant push and pull between those who believe SEL is necessary and those who want schools to focus solely on academics. Here’s the reality: Schools no longer have a choice but to take on social-emotional learning. For too many years, the focus has been on standardized testing and international comparisons of student performance with little attention given to helping students deal with the trauma they experience. At the same time, as research around trauma’s effects on learning has grown, there has been an increasing awareness of how important it is for educators to support students who suffer from trauma.

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Arnold Lobel