Part II: Creating A Positive School Climate in The New School Semester
Schools are a thriving ecosystem and are an integral part of every child’s life. The responsibility lies with the school management, teachers, and parents to make sure that they continue to thrive and provide a positive environment for a student to learn and grow.
To create such a positive environment requires a broader focus that goes beyond academics. School management, teachers and parents need to work towards implementing formal social and emotional programs like SEL Adventures at schools. Here is how schools, teachers, and parents can achieve a positive school climate.
Schools should focus on assessing the existing school climate. They can achieve this by taking into account the rate of absenteeism, cases of bullying, parent complaints, and other such problems in the school in the previous semester. Schools can also randomly select students, parents and teachers and interview them to find out the ground reality. They can also take the help of a consultant. This kind of granular assessment will help them identify the problems the students are facing and how to address them in the new semester.
Create a Plan
Once the school has identified the problem, the next step should be working towards a resolution. The resolution should include inputs from all the stakeholders – teachers, students, and parents. This ensures engagement and a commitment to realize a shared vision. Socially and emotionally healthy school environment can only be built on such a concerted effort from all the stakeholders.
Schools can then decide how they are going to incorporate the social and emotional learnings in their curriculum. Programs like SEL Adventures help them pick and choose among courses that address different issues at a school, including addiction, bullying, anxiety, and so on.
A positive school climate requires positive relationships. Such relationships should exist among the students as well as between the students and teachers. Teachers become more accessible to students, which aids learning. The positive relationships among students help in boosting their confidence, developing amazing friendships, and promote attendance at school.
It’s Well Worth It
While the whole process and the collaboration among stakeholders do require certain degree of time and effort, it is every bit worth it. However, programs like SEL Adventures do help in a more seamless and successful implementation.
A positive school climate completely changes how a school functions and how a child evolves. It can transform an anxious child on the first day back to school to a confident, happy, and a student eager to learn by the end of it. The return on investment in a positive school environment is incredibly high.