(Chelsea Update would like to thank Marcus Kaemming and Lisa Nickel for the information in this story. This is the first in a series of stories.)
The social and emotional well being of our students is essential in their ability to be ready to learn academics.
With the onset of the pandemic, this need is more prevalent than ever before. As a district, we have long recognized the importance of addressing the social emotional skills in our students.
When we developed the Portrait of a Graduate, staff and all of our stakeholders felt strongly that including the development of these skills was crucial when thinking about our students as graduates entering an ever-changing world. From our youngest learners through high school, our CSD staff work on developing these skills.
In a series of articles, we will share with you what the social and emotional branches of our Portrait of a Graduate entail as well as how it translates to opportunities and skill development for our students.
The Social Branch states that The Chelsea School District will foster students to be globally and culturally conscious citizens who act with integrity by providing opportunities for students to enhance social well-being. Our staff fosters growth and development in the following areas:
- Involved Contributor – A Chelsea graduate uses his/her skills and resources to benefit others within and beyond the community in a positive way.
- Globally and Culturally Conscious – A Chelsea graduate appreciates and understands different cultures and our expansive global society. Such understanding leads to a sensitivity towards other people and cultures.
- Act with Integrity – A Chelsea graduate strives to do the right thing in all circumstances. This includes being honest, having strong moral principles, taking responsibility for your own actions, and being true to oneself.
- Civic-Minded – A Chelsea graduate is interested in, and cares about, what is going on in his or her community. Their actions and activities are motivated by the public good or humanity as a whole.
- Advocate – A Chelsea graduate stands up for his or her own views and/or needs, while providing support and voice to others.
Equally as important is the Emotional Branch.
This branch’s foundation is that the Chelsea School District will foster students to be confident, reflective and empathetic by supporting their overall emotional health. Much like the Social Branch, the emotional branch also has supporting elements that have been an area of focus of the district for the last three years.
They are as follows:
- Grit – A Chelsea graduate has strong character and perseveres toward goals with an indomitable spirit.
- Confident – A Chelsea graduate is sure of him/herself and his/her abilities in a variety of situations.
- Adaptable – A Chelsea graduate adjusts to a variety of situations within their community and beyond.
- Reflective – A Chelsea graduate thinks about his/her choices to inform future behaviors.
- Healthy – A Chelsea graduate makes positive and responsible choices that lead to a sound mind and body.
- Passionate – A Chelsea graduate is compelled by strong feelings about topics that may be personal or global.
- Empathetic – A Chelsea graduate considers and cares about the thoughts and feelings of others around them.
It’s these elements coupled with those of the Social Branch that make up the Social Emotional Learning for our students.
All staff members have important responsibilities in making sure the portrait comes to fruition. It should also be noted that while it says a Chelsea graduate, these elements are all taught and enforced at each level in our district.
Whether it’s helping our youngest student navigate a playground issue or it’s a student struggling at the secondary level to fit it, our staff are supporting your students.
During the next few weeks, CSD will release additional details of this extremely important work via different articles.
We will share the history of the last three years through the lens of the Portrait of the Graduate as well as how our focus in this area has been heightened with the pandemic. We will close out the article series with our current and future plans with this very important work.
If we have learned anything about the last few months, it’s the importance of teaching skills in the social emotional arena so that our students have the ability to be resilient during challenging times.
Our staff are amazing and have worked extremely hard to support our students both academically as well as emotionally. Oftentimes, no one sees this action unless your child is directly involved.
We plan to share what happens behind the scenes so stay tuned for future articles.