Mental & Behavioral Health

  • Instruction/Teaching

    How will social and emotional learning be modified to conform to health regulations, since there is typically a large portion of hands-on activity?

    Many of our school routines and activiites will be modified to ensure safety. Our school teams are and will be working together to reimagine many of the things we do during the school day, how students use materials and how they collaborate with peers.

     

    Social Connection

    The hybrid model is understandable from the physical health perspective. Are you considering the mental and emotional impact of the hybrid model on the kids and incorporating coping strategies for students?

    Yes. We are committed to supporting the social-emotional needs of our students. The Behavioral and Mental Health Reopening subucommittee is developing and curating resources for staff and families. We are prioritzing the importance of building connections, as well as helping students develop and practice self-awareness, help-seeking, coping, and self-regulation skills.

    When we moved to remote learning last Spring, I was very disappointed in the lack of attention on maintaining a sense of community for the students. My child was isolated as were many others. What changes are you making to ensure this doesn't happen next year?

    Connections are essential and students will have opportunity for these connections during their in-person and remote learning days.

    How will the special social and emotional needs of the youngest students (some of whom have never attended formal school and will be anxious and confused) be addressed? Is there any plan to prioritize the needs of these younger children who also will struggle more with remote learning and whose learning is meant to be more play based vs assignment based?

    Meeting the social-emotional needs of all of our students is essential. We will need to be creative and flexible as we support our youngest students in fostering connections and experiencing play-based learning while social distancing.

    What plans are in place for dropoff and pickup, especially for kids who don't know their way around and will probably have a hard time separating from parents?

    Specific arrival and departure routines will be adjusted. Staff will be available to escort students and to support them if they are struggling with separation. Staff may wear additional PPE if needed.

    What suggestions do you have for someone who is new to the school and community without an established network or friend group? Could the school facilitate pairing of like-aged students to work together during the remote times?

    We are reimagining in-person welcoming events to allow time for these important connections to occur in a safe way prior to the start of school. We are also exploring ways to support students' peer connections throughout the school year.

    What plans are in place to facilitate teacher-student relationship building?

    The Working Group for Social, Emotional, and Behavioral Health is very aware of the importance of relationship building with regards to health and learning and is developing activities for families and educators. They are also identifying ways to build connection and developing a robust website. Additionally, the district is exploring ways to build student and teacher relationships through innovative means such as remote or social-distanced orientations.

    What opportunities will there be for orientation for students who are new to this school?

    All schools will be developing virtual orientations. Additionally, depending upon safety metrics, the district may be able to offer social distanced meet and greets.

    Will student doing all-remote learning be able to attend recess/outdoor activities with their classmates?

    Unfortunately, no. The hybrid model is intended to limit cohort exposure. We will be looking to identify opportnities for students in the Sudbury Remote Academy to connect with peers and schools.