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Parents in the Seattle area are being trained and paid to reach out to other families and encourage them to get involved in their children’s schooling.
Along the Texas-Mexico border, a nonprofit group is working with children touched by violence and creating peer groups for students with other sorts of struggles. And in Indiana, community health groups and counseling agencies are helping a school district enact a comprehensive strategy to improve student behavior.
Those efforts—and 13 others nationwide—are getting a boost from the federal Race to the Top district competition, for which applicants earned bonus points by pairing with outside groups on initiatives to improve students’ social and emotional well-being and behavior.
Thanks for sharing this important information with us, Mike. The article clearly states that schools applying for "Race to the Top" funds will need to demonstrate how they plan to incorporate SEL and work on developing a positive school climate:
The next Race to the Top district competition, possibly later this year, will be smaller: The administration plans to spend about $120 million. But the Education Department said in April that it wants the option of adding another priority so that it could require districts to address the behavioral, social, and emotional needs of students and families as part of their core proposals—not just to get an upper hand over competitors.
Supporters of SEL and positive school climate should certainly bring this to the attention of their district's administration.