Social-Emotional Growth and the Kansans Can Vision for Education

Social-Emotional Growth (SEG) is a high priority for Kansans. In the Kansas Can Vision for Education, SEG is one of the five measured outcome set forth by the Kansas State Board of Education. Skills encompassed in SEG include intrapersonal and interpersonal abilities, such as self-awareness, social awareness, problem solving, and decision making. These are skills that can be taught, and they are foundational to student success in school and life. It is important for schools to measure the social-emotional development of students, just as academic development is measured. These measures can inform instructional practice, moving social and emotional learning from a singular endeavor to an integrated part of daily instruction.

The Kansans Can Vision for Education calls for a more student-focused system that provides support and resources for individual success and will require everyone to work together to make it a reality. Together, Kansans Can.

American Institutes for Research (AIR) is a leader in SEG. In October of 2016 AIR released a comprehensive report titled, “When Districts Support and Integrate Social and Emotional Learning (SEL): Findings from an Ongoing Evaluation of Districtwide Implementation of SEL". This report provides the research base that demonstrates the importance of integrating SEG in Kansas schools.

For this vision to become reality, SEG must be seamlessly integrated into all areas of the school environment. The Kansas State Department of Education (KSDE) has produced short video explaining the Kansans Can Vision for SEG, along with the Kansans Can Process for Social Emotional Integration.

Kansas SECD Standards, Resources, and Measurement Documents

Kansas State Board of Education (KSBE) adopted aligned Social-Emotional and Character Development (SECD) Standards in 2012, and was the first state to adopt such standards integrated with character development. The second revision of these standards was approved by the KSBE July 2018.

In addition to the Kansas SECD standards, KSDE has incorporated the Kansans Can Competencies. This comprehensive resource is aligned with the Kansans Can Vision for Education, and it supports the integration of social-emotional competencies, curriculum and instruction. The following resources will provide information regarding standards, competencies, resources and measurement.

School Climate Report available to all schools. This report is available to all schools who participate in the Kansas Communities That Care Survey. This report can be used to as a tool to identify areas of school climate strengths and potential areas of growth. This information can also be helpful as artifacts for the KESA process and the Kansans Can Star Recognition for Social Emotional Growth. To learn more about this tool, please visit: Measuring Social Emotional Growth Kansas MTSS & Alignment.

If your district participates in the annual, validated, anonymous, and free Kansas Communities That Care (KCTC) student survey, you will access your report in the AMOSS (Academic measures of Student Success) system within the KSDE web application.

  1. Log into the KSDE Web Application and enter AMOSS.

  2. Click “Climate Survey” from the list of options on the left-hand side.

  3. Select “climate survey” from the drop down

  4. Select a school year

  5. Select “download” under the Climate Survey Reports box.

SUPPORT: Use this quick video to get oriented

Resources and Professional Development

The Kansas Technical Assistance System Network (TASN) is the technical assistance provider for KSDE. The KSDE has a wealth of evidence-based resources and professional development opportunities for Kansas educators including a calendar of high quality events with links to registration and a monthly e-newsletter at TASN webpages specific to Social-Emotional Growth, behavior, trauma, school mental health (SMH), and school culture include:

Other Professional Development Resources include:

Trauma-Informed Schools

What is trauma-informed? The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) defines it this way. “A program, organization, or system that is trauma-informed responds by fully integrating knowledge about trauma into policies, procedures, and practices, and seeks to actively resist re-traumatization.” The following resources provide information regarding trauma, Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE’s), and resiliency.

Restorative Practices

A restorative school implements a restorative approach to resolve conflict and heal relationships. Restorative approaches refer to strategies which can be used both to prevent relationship-damaging incidents from happening and to resolve them if they do happen. The following are resources related to restorative justice/practices.

Evidence-Based Practices in Social Emotional Growth

As schools seek to enhance social-emotional growth, it is essential that they be utilizing evidence-based practices. The following resources will link schools to best practices in social-emotional growth.

Recommended National Websites

American Institute for Research One of the world's largest behavioral and social science research and evaluation organizations.

Association for Supervision, Curriculum and Development Dedicated to excellence in learning, teaching, and leading so that every child is healthy, safe, engaged, supported, and challenged.

Character Lab Researching and creating new ways to help all students develop character. An organization of passionate people advocating for integrity, honesty, respect, and other core ethical values to be fused into education for the betterment of our nation.

Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL) Advancing the practice of promoting integrated academic, social, and emotional learning for all children in preschool through high school.

National Center of Safe Supportive Learning Environments Information and technical assistance for States, districts, schools, institutions of higher learning, and communities focused on improving student supports and academic enrichment.

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