• Facilitation Tips for Discussing Tough Topics with Students

    Facilitation Tips for Discussing Tough Topics with Students (Adapted from Engaging Schools’ The Advisory Guide, https://bit.ly/2CR4FiW) Tough topics arise. They may concern cliques, a drinking-and-driving incident, or national events like mass shootings. Students know what is happening and their concerns can easily show in their behavior or mood. Here are some facilitation tips for hard…

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  • We need to grapple with bias if we want to eliminate disproportional discipline

    In the context of looking at existing beliefs that can lead to over-suspension, over-referral, and stubborn disproportionality in school discipline, we need to consider different kinds of bias, both implicit and explicit, which can get in the way of building an accountable, restorative school culture based on shared values. As Executive Director Larry Dieringer said…

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  • Equitable, restorative, and accountable discipline is a must in every school

    A recent op-ed and a law professor’s rebuttal offer a glimpse into current tension around the US Department of Education’s position on schoolwide discipline. Background: In 2014 the US Department of Education (DoE) sent a “Dear Colleague” letter to all states and districts advising them that they were vulnerable to federal investigation if they did…

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  • Realizing the Full Vision of School Discipline Reform

    The Council of State Governments (CSG) Justice Center has released a new report, Realizing the Full Vision of School Discipline Reform: A Framework for Statewide Change, which documents how five states have reduced their reliance on suspensions while moving toward a more comprehensive vision of school discipline reform—one that ensures that efforts to limit disciplinary…

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  • Recommended resources for helping students cope with mass violence

    The following resources are once again relevant to recent events. The National Association of School Psychologists’ guidelines for helping students cope with terrorism and other kinds of mass violence provides support for adults in schools. Here is an excerpt: “Upper middle school and high school students will have strong and varying opinions about the causes…

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  • Engaging Schools Publishes White Paper on Embedding Social and Emotional Learning in High School Classrooms

    Engaging schools is pleased to announce a new white paper, Embedding Social and Emotional Learning in High School Classrooms, to help districts and schools meet the challenges of implementing social and emotional learning (SEL) in high schools. Drawing on more than 20 years’ experience working with secondary school leaders and classroom teachers, we advocate that…

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  • Resources for adults in schools post-Charlottesville

    Thanks to the Massachusetts Teachers Association and others for collecting these resources to help adults in schools as they respond to hate and bigotry with their students and peers. “Seven ways that teachers can respond to the evil of Charlottesville, starting now” http://www.alternet.org/teachers-respond-charlottesville “The first thing teachers should do when school starts is talk about…

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  • Students are more likely to graduate if we help them successfully adjust to high school

    Our board of directors includes many educators with deep experience as practitioners and researchers. One is Jenny Nagaoka, who – along with John Gomperts of America’s Promise Alliance – recently published a commentary in Education Week citing ways to help more students finish high school. Jenny is the Deputy Director of the University of Chicago…

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  • Shifting Gears recognized by Teachers College Record

    Since it was released last year, Shifting Gears: Recalibrating Schoolwide Discipline and Student Support has been an important, hands-on resource for hundreds of school and district leaders working on school climate, culture and discipline matters. Now Shifting Gears has received a positive review from the highly regarded Teachers College Record: “Shifting Gears is a text…

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  • Resources for teachers, counselors, administrators, and families responding to the election and its aftermath

    Engaging Schools has gathered the following resources that we hope will be helpful to you in supporting civil discourse, respect, and a positive environment for all students as you respond with them to the aftermath of the election, and as you facilitate discussions related to events as they unfold. We will provide additional resources as…

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