Infusing Trauma-Informed Practices into Early Childhood Education
Infusing Trauma-Informed Practices into Early Childhood Education

Building resources for teachers that support the needs and help facilitate the healing process of young children who have experienced trauma.

 

Disparities in exposure to adverse childhood experiences contribute to academic inequities, commonly referred to as the achievement gap.

History

STRIVE (Supportive Trauma Interventions for Educators) was developed through a collaborative partnership between Boston Medical Center Child-Witness to Violence Project, Boston Public Schools, and Vital Village Network. STRIVE aims to improve student success by improving the quality of teacher-student interactions using an evidence-based, trauma-informed model. STRIVE was designed in response to the ideas, requests, and concerns raised by educators, parents and administrators in several Boston Public Schools. The model is designed to be sustainable by developing leadership and expertise within schools.

Trauma-Informed Practices

STRIVE aims to help schools and early education systems of care increase their capacity to identify, respond to, and optimally support the unique needs of young children who have been impacted by trauma exposure. STRIVE works on several levels to build resiliency of students by supporting educators and caregivers, improving classroom environments, and developing trauma-sensitive school systems connected to community-based resources:

  • First, building the capacity of teachersto support students by enhancing their understanding of trauma, and its impact on learning and behavior and use this knowledge to optimize classroom environments.
  • Next, promoting trauma-understanding and socio-emotional awareness of caregivers and parents through parent workshops and a backpack toolkit for the home.
  • Finally, mobilizing community-based resources and health services to create a comprehensive network of services for children and families connected to the school system and fostering local leadership trajectories to sustain trauma-sensitive approaches beyond the tenure of the intervention.

Goals

STRIVE uses a multidisciplinary, cross-sector network to build the capacity of supportive adults (parents, caregivers, educators, etc.) to address the needs of children exposed to trauma. Toward that end our three goals are:
  1. To improve socio-emotional regulation for children and improve student-teacher interactions
  2. To integrate a cultural lens that acknowledges inequities in exposure to adverse childhood experiences, in order to create inclusive learning envrionments for students
  3. To promote trauma-sensitive school environments by leveraging existing data and coordinating partnerships to build institutional capacity of public schools that serve minority and disadvantaged youth
To achieve these goals, we aim to engage educators and community residents in leading, designing, and improving trauma-informed, supportive school atmospheres.

 

Impact

  • We have trained over 200 BPS educators, over 20 BPS Schools, reaching an estimated 2,000 students
  • Read about the STRIVE Framework for Trauma Sensitive Schools and preliminary results HERE

Collaborators

  • Child Witness to Violence Project
  • Boston Public Schools (BPS)
  • Succeed Boston (formerly the Counseling Intervention Center) at BPS
  • Children's Services of Roxbury Preschool

Project Leads

  • Neena McConnico, PhD, LMHC 
  • Courtney Bailey, LICSW

Request & Learn More About STRIVE Offerings

 

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