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This Month's SEL Conversation / August 2022

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Dear Carolina,

Backpack? Check. Number two pencils? Check. Caring teachers and social and emotional skills? Check!

As communities return to school, social and emotional learning (SEL) is just as essential as school supplies. District leaders cite it as a top priority. Parents are calling for more focus on SEL in schools. Students are asking for time to build friendships and connect with teachers.

But with midterm elections looming this fall, politics has also shined the limelight on SEL. As young people return to classrooms, we need to put childrennot politicsat the center of our conversations. Let’s give the microphone to families, students, and educators who understand the real impact of SEL on their lives. CASEL and the Allstate Foundation partnered with families across the country on the reasons they believe in an education that prioritizes SEL. Why?

The reality: 88 percent of parents want their students to learn social and emotional skills like respect, cooperation, perseverance, and empathy. 

The distraction: A narrative that prioritizes politics over studentsdrowning out our voices and putting at risk our children’s education and future. 

We can’t do it without you. As champions of SEL, consider: 

How can families, educators, community partners, and policy leaders rise to the moment to protect every child’s social, emotional, and academic learning? 

Read on for key actions you can take this back-to-school season in your community, including helpful resources.

Listen to and learn from caregivers

Families and caregivers are critical partners in our children’s education. How can we bridge the communications between educators and families on SEL? Whether you are engaging in a family conference, participating in a year-end reflection, or connecting with new families and students, ongoing conversations between families and educators on SEL are key. Listen to caregiver stories or host a caregiver discussion. Learn more.

Contact decision-makers

Sharing your SEL story is needed now, more than ever, to protect and advance SEL. Lawmakers and decision-makers need to hear from you and your community on what your experience has been like and why it is important that your community has access to SEL. Access easy actions and messaging to get started and share why SEL is important to you. Learn more.

Lead a conversation

If you believe in the power of SEL, then you are a key messenger and leader of SEL in your community. Despite a growing spotlight on SEL, some are still asking: What is it and why is it important? Start a conversation with someone who may be unfamiliar with SEL by focusing on a few key points: SEL builds lifelong skills, improves academic achievement, prepares children for the future, and has overwhelming support from parents. Learn more.

Share on social media

SEL leaders—everyday people, parents, and caregivers—have enormous influence among networks on social media, much more so than organizations. If you believe in SEL, tell your friends about it. Share sample posts and social media graphics to #LeadwithSEL. Learn more.

Engage local media

Your local paper or media outlet can shine a positive spotlight on SEL and inform more people in your community about the difference it can make. Do you have a story to share about the impact of SEL on your family, students, or community? Write a persuasive op-ed or a short letter to the editor by using these templates. Learn more.

Community Spotlight

Share how you #LeadwithSEL

Share with your Network


It’s Time to Work Together to Defend SEL

October 13Register for the 2022 SEL Exchange Virtual Summit - “Weaving a New Tapestry: Schools, Families and Communities Together”

  • Education Week: Why Principals Must Focus on SEL, School Climate Right Now

  • Despite Lawmakers Trying to Control Content in Classrooms, Majority of Ohio Parents Trust Their Kids’ Teachers

  • Hechinger Report: SEL May Be The Latest Buzzword, But It’s Really Just Good Teaching

  • August 30: Sponsored Webinar: What Makes Me? Core Capacities for Living and Learning

  • September 7: Sponsored Webinar: Strengthening the Parent-Teacher Partnership

  • September 23: Demystifying Systemic SEL Webinar: Continuous Improvement

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