Social-Emotional Learning: Not A Moment But A Movement

On May 1, more than 300 educators, researchers, and policymakers gathered for the inaugural exSEL Network conference, titled Social-Emotional Learning: Lessons Learned and Opportunities for Massachusetts, led by Transforming Education, the Rennie Center, and SEL4MA. Participants took part in breakout sessions focused on learning from the experiences of districts putting social-emotional learning policies and practices into place and hearing from experts about SEL supports and strategies.

The conference was kicked off by keynote speaker Dr. Stephanie Jones, Professor at the Harvard Graduate School of Education and member of the Council of Distinguished Scientists for the National Commission on Social, Emotional, and Academic Development (SEAD). In her speech, Dr. Jones drew on the recommendations in the National Commission’s report From a Nation at Risk to a Nation at Hope, calling for the assembled practitioners to focus on teaching social-emotional skills directly and explicitly, creating safe and supportive learning environments, supporting adult capacity, and building partnerships and alliances. Dr. Jones also invited the researchers and policymakers in attendance to build a research paradigm that begins with practice and emphasizes the intersection of research and practice.  

"We want to turn the work of the Aspen Commission into a movement.
This room is the start. Let’s push forward not as a moment, but as a movement.”
~Dr. Stephanie Jones

At Transforming Education, we strive to be a part of the movement. To celebrate the great work that educators are doing to bring social-emotional learning, positive learning environments, and whole child development to life in their classrooms, schools, and districts/CMOs, we featured the work of current and former partners in our breakout sessions on May 1st. Snapshots of those sessions are available on our blog.

Read Session Descriptions Here

The Excellence Through Social-Emotional Learning (exSEL) Network is a group of Massachusetts districts that work to build knowledge, understanding, and strategies regarding the effective implementation of social-emotional learning that can positively impact students’ learning and academic and life outcomes.

Co-leaders Transforming Education and the Rennie Center are inviting districts across Massachusetts to participate in this collaborative learning network designed to increase their capacity to improve social-emotional learning and build more supportive learning environments. Participants will learn from one another’s current work, discuss problems of practice with like-minded colleagues, and gain new skills to apply right away in their schools or districts.

Apply to be part of the 2019-2020 exSEL cohort today!
Applications are due by May 31, 2019.

Apply to ExSEL Today!
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