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Sunnyvale School District featured in report from National Commission on Social, Emotional, and Academic Development

A report released by the Aspen Institute National Commission on Social, Emotional, and Academic Development recognized Sunnyvale School District as having an “exemplary approach” in bolstering students’ social, emotional, and academic development.

The Aspen Institute’s “From a Nation at Risk to a Nation at Hope” asserts that our nation is at a turning point, understanding that social, emotional, and cognitive development underpins children’s academic learning. This breakthrough understanding about how people learn is fueling a growing movement to educate children as whole people, the report says.

Sunnyvale School District has included a social-emotional learning component in every classroom in the district. Social-emotional learning curricula generally aim to help children develop competency in five core areas: self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship management, and responsible decision-making. Sunnyvale School District uses materials provided through the California Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) Technical Assistance Center, and partners with Project Cornerstone, the Center for Reaching and Teaching the Whole Child, and Acknowledge Alliance to provide the quality instruction and interventions for our students, teachers, and staff.

“I greatly appreciate the commission’s recognition of this important initiative and the good work of our teachers who strive to support the social-emotional needs of our students every day in our classrooms,” said Sunnyvale School District Superintendent Benjamin Picard. “Tending to the social-emotional needs of our school children can knock down another barrier to learning and academic success.”

The report also outlines evidence that confirms that supporting students’ social, emotional and academic development has a positive impact on their attendance, test scores, success in college and careers, and overall well-being. This approach also improves students’ feelings about school and makes schools safer.

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