States Need to Adopt Comprehensive SEL Standards

This is the final article in a five-part series of insights from Newark Trust for Education’s Director of P-12 Strategy, Stephanie Parry, on the value of social emotional learning (SEL).

For SEL to be most effective, implementation should be specifically geared towards the groups it is intended for. One way states can help ensure that SEL practices are age-appropriate is by providing broad standards by age group. A comprehensive and tailored set of guidelines can also create consistency and alignment across districts and provide direction for teachers implementing SEL programs.

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We Must Ensure SEL Providers Are Aligned and Integrated With Unique School Environments

This is the fourth article in a five-part series of insights from Newark Trust for Education’s Director of P-12 Strategy, Stephanie Parry, on the value of social emotional learning (SEL).

Often overlooked players in the SEL ecosystem are program providers that are contracted to work in schools and districts. Though experts agree that integrated and embedded district-wide systems and practices are most effective, many schools find it helpful to partner with outside agencies to bring SEL programs to their students and staff.

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Schools Must Incorporate Family, Student, and Community Voices Into SEL Implementation Practices

This article is the third in a five-part series of insights from Newark Trust for Education’s Director of P-12 Strategy, Stephanie Parry, on the value of social emotional learning (SEL).

Systems and practices to support social emotional learning should create meaningful engagement with such partners and decision makers as students, families, and communities. This ensures strategies are age-appropriate, culturally relevant, and widely understood and adopted by stakeholders.

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Districts Should Ensure That Systems and Practices Support Adult SEL

This article is part of a 5-part series of insights from Stephanie Parry, Newark Trust’s Director of P-12 strategy on the value of social emotional learning (SEL).

While the improvement of student competencies is central to the case for SEL in schools, learning cannot happen without adults. The pandemic highlighted the need for schools and districts to make educator well-being a priority and create environments in which both students and staff feel safe and supported. SEL is a tool to help educators improve their own social emotional skills, which in turn can lead to positive outcomes for the students they teach.

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Meet Students in the Middle!

Keeping SEL engaging in early adolescence 

Pritha Gopalan 


The eye rolls got more frequent in seventh grade. That I clearly remember. My affectionate, enthusiastic children became moody and distant. Even a decade of working in middle-grades educational research did not prepare me for my turn as a parent to middle graders. So, while I was not surprised when I saw the drop in enthusiasm for social-emotional learning (SEL) among seventh graders on a survey we recently conducted, it did make me want to dig deeper into what works in SEL during early adolescence.  

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The Value of SEL and the Science Behind It

This article is the first in a five-part series of insights from Newark Trust for Education’s Director of P-12 Strategy, Stephanie Parry, on the value of social emotional learning (SEL). 

Contentious rhetoric from a minority of people has put educators and experts on the defense about the long-established benefits of social and emotional learning (SEL). After months of political football on the topic, and with heightened national concern about student well-being and learning loss, it’s time to get back to the discussion about what states, districts, and schools should do to ensure students are developing the competencies necessary to promote learning and development. The Newark Trust has identified four actionable steps in a K-12 Dive article authored by Stephanie Parry that explores how schools can implement SEL with maximum benefit. 

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Narrowing the Digital Divide: Our Future Depends On It

The digital divide refers to the gap between families that have quality computer hardware and high-speed internet –and those that don’t. The Newark Trust for Education has long been an advocate of digital equity for all students. Our Executive Director Ronald Chaluisán recently spoke with KQ Education Group about the urgent need to ensure that all learners have access to a computer and high-speed internet service, stating that these items are not luxuries – they are necessities. In the interview he says, “one lesson of remote learning is that every student needs a computer and internet access at home.”

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Interview with Marquise Guzman, Senior Program Manager of Neighborhood Partnerships, Joseph C. Cornwall Center for Metropolitan Studies, Rutgers University-Newark


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Ripple Effects

When my children were in elementary school, there were times when I could not attend school events and meetings. I’d ask my mother or sister to stand in for me when it was a cultural or sporting event. However, I’d reschedule even the most difficult work meeting or commitment if it was an academic meeting or parent-teacher conference. Like many, I compartmentalized learning, believing that parenting, grandparenting, and schooling were essentially different, and that most learning happened in formal spaces like school. 

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Best Practices for Supporting Students’ Mental Health

Mental Illness Awareness Week (MIAW) is a time to reflect on the importance of mental health and recognize the impact it has on students’ lives, their learning experiences, and their success outside of the classroom. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, one in six U.S. youth ages 6-17 experience a [diagnosed] mental health disorder each year.” This data reminds both parents and educators how vital it is to work together and support the mental health and emotional development of students.

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3 Ways Teachers Can Support Students During Back-to-School Season

This school year is in full swing. This is an exciting and busy time for both students and educators! As children are back to their busy schedules - with homework, home responsibilities, and extracurricular activities, it is important to support them and make sure they have the resources they need to succeed. The Newark Trust for Education has compiled useful tips from educators on how to navigate the transition from summer to school.

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4 Ways of Empowering Students to Lead

A research article from Penn State University states, “Leadership skills allow children to have control of their lives and the ability to make things happen.” Encouraging the development of these skills not only builds confidence but encourages collaboration, promotes problem solving, and increases their sense of responsibility. Fostering an environment where young people are empowered to lead creates bright futures for them – and helps their communities. 

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4 Imperatives for a Safe and Supportive School Year

While students will soon be immersed in school and extracurricular activities, many face social challenges and will need support. When learners’ social and emotional needs become a priority, it can help motivate them to reach their full potential in the classroom and at home. 

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Back To School Means Back To Routine

As Newark families prepare for the return to school in September, the transition from summer break can be difficult for parents, caregivers, and kids. It is important for adults to get an efficient routine in place so that students can adjust back to their regime and stay engaged throughout the school year. Effective planning will help families handle the back-to-school transition with much less stress.

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Embed Learning into Summer Fun!

During the pandemic parents and caregivers reported concerns about learning loss. However, there is a way to mitigate learning loss – while still engaging kids in fun activities. 

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