Across the Board


Across the Board logo is centered at the top. Decorative.

Tuesday, October 12, 2021
The following is a summarized version of Across the Board. For the full version click here.
Next Board of Education Meeting
Tuesday, October 26 at 5:00 p.m.
Board Study Session
Academic Excellence and Safe, Positive Culture and Climate
 
The Board conducted a public Study Session to dive into a discussion regarding the Board’s End Goal of Academic Excellence and Safe, Positive Culture and Climate. These are two of five areas that the Board consistently monitors to ensure continuous organizational improvement in meeting the needs of all students. See the Board’s End Goals.
The Board of Education had a robust conversation with the Superintendent, Cabinet members, and DCSD staff, including principals, directors and counselors. Click here to view the presentation slides.
Participants discussed many essential questions regarding mental health and Social Emotional Learning in DCSD, including:

  • What does Mental Health and Social Emotional Learning look like in the Douglas County School District?
  • Social Emotional Learning (SEL) - What is it and what are the benefits?
  • Does SEL have any impact on levels of academic achievement?
  • Why are there challenges with Social Emotional Learning in our schools?
  • What professional development and training is available for our staff?
  • What are the next steps at the district and school level?
Mental Health
 
While there is cross-over between mental health resources and Social Emotional Learning, there are important differences between the two. A national mental health crisis has been escalating over several years (see slides in presentation). Participants reviewed Douglas County suicide rates by age group, suicide-related emergency room visits, as well as suicide risk assessments in DCSD by school year. The data spanned multiple years.
Some contributing factors to youth feeling overwhelmed may include: 
  • Feelings of hopelessness, which is one predictor of suicidal ideation. 
  • Chronic stress
  • Feelings of burnout
  • Social isolation
  • Social Media
  • History of trauma
  • Tobacco use
  • Substance use
Mental health resources and services in DCSD include crisis services such as suicide prevention programs and training. 
 Social Emotional Learning
Social Emotional Learning develops competencies/capacities within our students. Some of these include:

  • Academic engagement and success
  • Healthy relationships
  • Employment opportunities - collaborative/teamwork skills
  • Positive mindset and optimistic outlook
  • Grit, tenacity, perseverance
  • Emotional coping strategies and self-management
  • Strong sense of self
  • Personal responsibility
  • Engaged and productive citizens
Participants discussed social emotional learning programs and resources offered in DCSD and the benefits of those programs. 
 Monitoring Reports
As part of the Board’s monitoring report process, DCSD staff will formalize a user-friendly template that will summarize indicators of success in Academic Excellence and Safe, Positive Culture and Climate and areas for improvement. Proposed dates for completion of these reports will be forthcoming at future Board study sessions.
Additional Updates
DCSD Spotlight - Social Emotional Learning
 
Superintendent Corey Wise talked about Social Emotional Learning (SEL), a main focus in DCSD this year. While SEL isn’t new to DCSD, it’s more critical than ever as students, staff, and families cope with the ongoing COVID pandemic. SEL helps children learn critical skills such as self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, decision-making, and relationship building which in turn helps reduce stress, anxiety, and other potential barriers to learning.
Superintendent Wise showed a short video spotlighting SEL at Sand Creek Elementary, Soaring Hawk Elementary, and Cimarron Middle School. 


Full Reports and Archives:




Archived Across the Board Minutes

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