Friendswood ISD is pushing social-emotional learning (SEL) as one of its main initiatives during the 2018-2019 school year. This initiative is the third of six layers in the FISD Safety Action Plan which was implemented by the Board of Trustees on July 30, 2018.
SEL is defined by the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL) as “the process through which children and adults acquire and effectively apply the knowledge, attitudes and skills necessary to understand and manage emotions, set and achieve positive goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain positive relationships, and make responsible decisions.”
Diane Myers, assistant superintendent of secondary curriculum & instruction, said it is the mission of FISD to provide students with schools that focus on both their academic and social-emotional needs.
“Friendswood ISD has always had a strong character program built on the District’s Character Education traits which include many opportunities for students to learn and practice character traits,” Myers said. “The SEL focus enhances the character program by bringing attention to the emotional well-being of students.”
One of the ways FISD has implemented these practices is by hiring an additional counselor for Friendswood High School whose position will have a primary focus on being available to care for the emotional needs of the students in a counseling setting. Myers stated FISD will continue to make SEL a priority in the future.
“Future changes will include keeping SEL at the forefront,” Myers said. “We will continue researching the best practices, involving the community, bringing in experts and providing resources.”
Myers said she believes social and emotional skills are critical to being a good student, citizen and overall person. She said by teaching students to respect others, embrace diversity and build healthy relationships, they will be better equipped to manage life in and outside of the classroom.
To read more about the actions FISD has taken to implement SEL into the classroom, as well as see the provided resources FISD has to offer, visit https://myfisd.com/sel/.