Attendance; Climate and Culture; Cultural Competence; Discipline; Diversity; Health; Mental Health; Safety; Social-Emotional Learning; Student Supports; Trauma-Informed Care and Resiliency; Whole Child; California Corner; Resources & Upcoming Events
School Climate Connection Newsletter

Role of Principals. Research indicates that effective principals can reduce student absenteeism, especially in urban and high-poverty schools, but are not necessarily the same principals who drive large test score gains, indicating principal accountability needs to be multidimensional.
 Climate and Culture

Makeover. Learn how Paxinosa Elementary School (PA) improved their school climate by focusing on student and teacher wellness, family supports, and the learning environment.
Assessment. The latest version of the ED School Climate Surveys platform has been released.
Data Use. Editorial director of FutureEd analyzes the strengths of school climate and student engagement data and its risks for accountability purposes.

 Cultural Competence

Culturally Responsive Teaching. Educators who participated in a culturally responsive teaching program share thoughts about their unconscious biases, perceptions of systemic inequity, and how they changed their teaching as a result of the program.
Social-Emotional Learning. Faculty from Boston College and Simmons University discuss how teaching students about oppression and critical consciousness is a vital component of social-emotional learning.


De-escalation Strategy.simple technique can help an agitated student regain the calm state of mind needed for learning.
SEL Approach. Southwest Junior High (AR) is changing its approach to discipline by using social-emotional learning to teach students skills and change their school climate.
Policy Brief. This policy brief summarizes the mixed research findings on restorative justice in education and provides recommendations for strategic implementation.  

Alignment. Learn strategies to align principals and teachers in addressing the challenges of student discipline.
Restorative Practices. Read about ways to implement and apply restorative practices in both the classroom and school.
Value of Positive Supports. Research indicates more teacher praise and fewer reprimands in the classroom are associated with improved on-task student behavior.
Suspension Rates. After nearly a decade of school discipline reform in California, the suspension rate for African American students continues to decline and data suggests restorative justice programs are effective at improving school climate.


School Integration. Harvard researchers released a report on parent support for school integration.


Behavioral Health. The Center for Health and Health Care in Schools has developed a new resource that provides an overview of prominent school behavioral health frameworks.
Supporting Hospitalized Students. A teacher shares strategies for supporting hospitalized students and their transition back to school.
Effect of Educational Attainment. This interactive tool examines the relationship between adolescent educational opportunity and life expectancy.
Vaping Prevalence. According to 2018 National Youth Tobacco Survey (NYTS) data, e-cigarette use among secondary students has increased alarmingly since 2017.

Vaping Toolkit. Addiction Policy Forum has developed a toolkit explaining the risks of adolescent vaping and teaching and intervention strategies.
 Mental Health

School Therapists. Therapists bring community mental health care directly to students in the Minneapolis Public Schools.
Effect on Academic Performance. This meta-analysis investigates the association between emotional intelligence and academic performance.
Youth Voice Survey. Youth Truth released a report summarizing survey data from over 70,000 students’ perceptions of their emotional and mental health.
Suicide Prevention. Anonymous reporting systems have helped save lives of adolescents experiencing suicidal thoughts.

Effect of School Isolation. Putting children in isolation during school risks causing unnecessary trauma, the U.K. Centre for Mental Health reports.


Bus Drivers. These strategies can help school bus drivers manage behavior and increase student safety.
Technology. Cincinnati Public Schools uses an online student safety platform to monitor students’ safety on and off campus.
Lockdown Drills and Disabilities. Schools need to plan and implement supports for students with disabilities during lockdown drills.
Standardized Violence Prevention Protocol. The National Association of School Resource Officers (NASRO) has received a federal grant to fund development of the first standardized violence prevention protocol (SVPP) for U.S. schools. 

See Upcoming Events.

 Social-Emotional Learning

The Role of Adults. When teachers and parents partner to support social-emotional development, they strengthen the educational experience of all students.
Resources. A CASEL Data Reflection Tool leads school teams through a process to continuously improve social-emotional learning implementation, including examining data with an equity lens and incorporating a range of perspectives when interpreting data.
Long Term Investment. Yale University professors advocate for investing in social-emotional learning.
Mindfulness. Teachers at Lafayette Elementary School (DC) are teaching and embedding mindfulness practices into the school day.

Implementation. Lincoln Primary School (MT) has experienced positive outcomes since implementing social-emotional learning.
 Student Supports

Student Voice. Students learn how to create podcasts to express their ideas.
Students in Affordable Housing. This brief highlights initiatives to support students living in affordable housing.
 Trauma-Informed Care and Resiliency

Accommodations. Students who have experienced trauma may benefit from social and emotional accommodations.
Classroom. Learn five ways to help students who have experienced trauma.
Toolkit. Transforming Education has developed a research-based toolkit on trauma-informed social-emotional learning.
 Whole Child

Comprehensive Student Development Framework. The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative released profiles of schools bringing a whole-child approach to the classroom.
Community Schools. RAND Corporation’s assessment of New York City Community Schools Initiative finds positive outcomes for students.
San Diego County. Voice of San Diego published the third edition of A Parent’s Guide to Public Schools and an interactive map of schools within the county.

Report Card. Children Now released The 2020 California Children’s Report Card with mixed outcomes for California’s children.
Foster Students. Educational Results Partnership released a report examining the academic transition of California students in foster care.

CalSCHLS Helpline:  888.841.7536
SCCN #86  2/20/20
In this issue:

 Climate and Culture
 Cultural Competence
 Mental Health
 Social-Emotional Learning
 Staff Supports
 Trauma-Informed Care and Resiliency
 Whole Child
 California Corner
 Upcoming Events


The Fall/Winter issue of the School Community Journal is now available.

SCCN updates and other resources are posted on CDE's School Climate Website by Topic Category
 Upcoming Events

Free Training

School Behavioral Threat Assessment: An Introduction
CDE-sponsored training designed to familiarize schools and districts with school behavioral threat assessments in preventing and reducing targeted violence in school settings.
Mon, Mar 16, 8:00 am - 4:00 pm
Mather, CA
Registration & Flyer

School Safety & Mental Health Crisis training from the CDE's Cal-STOP initiative.
Information  &  Flyer


The School Climate Connection Newsletter is provided monthly by WestEd under contract from the California Department of Education (CDE). Its purpose is to disseminate current information on school climate practices, policies, and resources to empower schools on improving school safety, conditions for learning, and pupil engagement and well-being. It includes up-to-date information on California's School Climate, Health, and Learning Survey (CalSCHLS) System (see

Find more tips and resources on improving your school climate on CDE's Safe and Supportive Schools website at  Subscribe to the e-newsletter at or, or click on the link below.
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