The Ladue School District recognizes the importance of effectively addressing the mental health and emotional well-being of students and staff at all times. Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the district has placed a heightened emphasis in these areas, as our community continues to experience an array of emotional responses related to this unprecedented time. With a comprehensive plan to meet individuals where they are, we will be able to engage from a proactive position to increase the opportunity for a positive impact on both psychological and academic outcomes. Ensuring that our procedures and recommendations are fully inclusive and equitable is equally important.
We have incorporated recommendations from the following organizations to help create a plan to support the social and emotional needs of our students: CASEL (Collaborative for Academic, Social and Emotional Learning), Second Step, Conscious Discipline, Character Strong, American School Counselor Association, Association of School Psychologists, CDC, the St. Louis County Department of Public Health and the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services.
We have identified four priorities to support the needs of students and staff as we resume school in the fall:
- Connection: Helping students and staff connect with each other and with other families can have a positive impact on all members of the school community.
- Flexibility: Tuning into what individuals need and collaborating to find routines, resources and strategies that will best support them will be essential.
- Predictability: Creating routines in school procedures and classroom lessons can restore predictability within the school environment.
- Empowerment: Encouraging shared decision-making and authentic choice, as rigid expectations can create barriers to learning for trauma-affected students.
To further support this effort, the district has hired two additional counselors who will focus on support our students’ social and emotional needs. If you would like to learn more about how the district is addressing the social and emotional needs of our students and staff, the Ladue Schools Social Emotional Plan is linked here.