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Research on social and emotional learning (SEL) has largely focused on classroom interventions and student-U� and classroomU�-level outcomes. Few studies have examined wholeU�-school and district-U�level SEL implementations, or how to ensure that SEL programs are implemented effectively and sustained over time. This study examines both process outcomes and program impact as Open Circle is rolled out across a large, urban district over a three-year period beginning in June 2012. The study investigates the following research questions: (1) What are the critical factors to successful implementation of a wholeU�-school, comprehensive SEL program as it is scaled up across one third of elementary schools serving grades KU�-5 in a large urban school district over a three-year period?; and (2) How will the implementation of the "Open Circle Curriculum" and corresponding professional development influence school climate, teacher practice, students' social and emotional skill development, and behavior? The sample in this study includes over 7,000 students, 400 classrooms, and 23 schools. Primary data from the first two years gathered through classroom observation and student surveys in grades 3 and 5, Open Circle fidelity checklists completed by coaches and observers, semiU�-annual online surveys completed by teachers, administrators and school support staff, focus group and individual interviews with staff, and training attendance and coaching logs provide data to measure program implementation, school climate, and social and emotional development at the student, classroom, school, and district levels. Preliminary results indicate that this whole-U�school SEL program is highly scalable, reaching over 7,000 students with training for nearly 800 staff members at 23 district schools in a twoU�-year period. Key success factors have been robust wholeU�-school professional development, high quality implementation, initial and ongoing principal and district administrator support, and teacher buy-in. Forthcoming data will enable further conclusions about outcomes and impact. Tables and figures are appended.
A wide and rich body of literature has identified the family as the key context influencing children's development. In response, school districts and policymakers have sought to engage parents in children's learning, particularly low-income families. Meta-analyses conclude that efforts to engage low-income parents do improve students' academic achievement. Such research has prompted developers of some school-based preventive interventions to integrate programming components targeted at students' parents. Social Emotional Learning (SEL) programs are one such type of school-based preventive intervention. SEL programs aim to improve children's social-emotional competencies (behavioral regulation, attentional skills, problem-solving, social skills), in order to support their academic development. This paper examines the parenting component of INSIGHTS into Children's Temperament, an SEL program that includes a manualized curriculum for teachers, students, and parents. Results from a randomized trial revealed that INSIGHTS improved students' achievement and sustained attention, and reduced their disruptive behaviors. The current study tests whether program impacts on low-income urban kindergarten and first grade students' academic, social-emotional, and behavioral outcomes differed by levels of parent participation. This study took place in 22 low-income urban public elementary schools. Ninety-one percent of participating children were age five or six when they enrolled in the study. Eleven schools were randomized to INSIGHTS; the remaining eleven schools were assigned to the attention-control condition. Previous research on school-based preventive interventions has typically found that more program dosage--at multiple levels--is associated with larger gains for students. Yet, the results of this study suggest that the dosage story in the INSIGHTS evaluation may be more nuanced than has been previously understood in literature on school-based interventions. Tables and figures are appended.
Teachers are responsible for delivering academic instruction, facilitating student learning and engagement, and managing classroom behavior. Stress may interfere with performance in the classroom, however (Tsouloupas, Carson, Matthews, Grawitch, & Barber, 2010), and recent studies suggest that stress is quite common among today's educators. In light of these trends and their potential for negatively impacting students' learning, it is critical to identify factors that support educators' health, wellbeing, and effectiveness. The Prosocial Classroom Model (Jennings & Greenberg, 2009) suggests that mindfulness and other aspects of social-emotional competence may lead to more effective classroom management and protect educators from experiencing a "burnout cascade" of deteriorating classroom climate, student misbehavior, and emotional exhaustion. Mindfulness has been defined as "paying attention in a particular way: on purpose, in the present moment, and nonjudgmentally" (Kabat- Zinn, 1994, p. 4), and mindfulness training for adults has been linked with reductions in stress and improvements in wellbeing (Ospina et al., 2007). Emerging evidence from intervention studies suggests that mindfulness training is associated with improvements in teachers' classroom behavior (e.g., Flook, Goldberg, Pinger, Bonus, & Davidson, 2013; Jennings, Frank, Snowberg, Coccia, & Greenberg, 2013). In a central Pennsylvania middle school setting, the authors examined how educators' mindfulness at the beginning of the school year predicted change in educators' self-reported efficacy with respect to student engagement, classroom management, and instructional practices from fall to spring of the school year. Two tables are appended.
The present study, which takes place in a high-poverty section of a large urban area of the northeastern United States, is based upon the prosocial classroom theoretical model that emphasizes the significance of teachers' social and emotional competence (SEC) and well-being in the development and maintenance of supportive teacher-student relationships, effective classroom management, and social and emotional learning (SEL) program effectiveness. These factors, as well as teachers' classroom management and instructional skills contribute to creating a classroom climate that is conducive to learning and that promotes positive developmental behavioral and academic outcomes among students. Cultivating Awareness and Resilience in Education (CARE) is a mindfulness-based professional development program designed to reduce stress, promote SEC and improve teachers' performance and classroom learning environments. From 8 elementary schools the authors recruited and consented 55 teachers (90.2% female, mean age = 39.41). They had relatively low attrition (7.2%) which was largely balanced across treatment and control conditions, resulting in a diverse sample of 51 teachers (53% white). All were regular lead teachers working in a self-contained classroom setting. The results reported here are from an IES-funded 4-year efficacy and replication study of CARE. The data are from the teacher self-report collected from the first year cohort of the cluster randomized controlled trial. After the teachers completed self-reports they were randomly assigned within schools to receive the CARE intervention or to a wait-list control group. After the treatment group received the CARE program, the same self-report battery was administered to both groups. A figure is appended.