October is Bullying Prevention Month and we have a variety of ways to prevent bullying and create a safe and encouraging learning environment in our schools by supporting the social and emotional well-being of all students. In recent years, the COVID-19 pandemic has only increased the need for student mental health and behavioral support. As a school district, we aim to provide a top notch education to every single student in our buildings, and in order to do that, we have to involve all aspects of the student in our approach. Our social workers, counselors, Social Emotional Learning Interventionists and mental health staff have helped to highlight a few ways we proactively do this important work.
The T-Bird Way and PBIS
Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) is a system used to build a positive school climate for students. At GFW Elementary, students learn the T-Bird Way on how to be respectful, responsible, and safe in and outside of the school as our approach to PBIS. With help from Social Emotional Learning Interventionists Brittany Schroeder and Melissa Larabee, students learn that their behavior and actions are an important part of our school community.
Watch the video for a look at the T-Bird Way
Social Emotional Learning and Conscious Discipline
Social Emotional Learning (SEL) at GFW has a strong focus on building positive relationships and taking a proactive approach at all grade levels. Our dedicated team works with individuals, small groups, and entire classrooms to develop a strong community within the schools.
GFW staff train on Conscious Discipline
This focus is then encouraged by Conscious Discipline, a system dedicated to bringing social, emotional, physical, cultural and cognitive learning into one seamless curriculum and supporting students. Training is provided to all GFW staff to make sure students are able to succeed with the tools they need to recognize their emotions and adjust their behavior. Students are taught to communicate effectively, problem solve with others, have empathy, understand differences, and gain the self-confidence needed to feel sure of themselves.
Restorative Practices is a method used at GFW Middle School and High School that focuses on building relationships between students, fostering a positive school climate and preventing bullying. Students meet in “Circle” to connect and develop a mindset that focuses on the gifts each person brings to school and how to repair harm when students feel that they have been wronged in some way. Starting with a focus that all people are inherently good, students explore interconnectedness with each other, build relationships, and have a process to discuss their thoughts and feelings with their peers.
By providing our students these resources, we proactively and systemically work to prevent bullying and make sure every student feels that they belong and are valued members of our community!Sincerely,
Dr. Jeff Horton
As always, if you have any questions about our district, please feel free to reach out to me via email at [email protected]