Chicago Public Schools releases multi-year plan to address trauma

Chicago News

CHICAGO — Chicago Public Schools unveiled a new plan Monday aimed at addressing trauma for its students, families and staff.

The district said the “Healing-Centered Framework,” which is funded by a $24 million investment over the next three years, will ensure every school has a behavioral health team and a trusted adult in the building to support students and more.

Hundreds of teachers, staff and students gave feedback and ideas for the initiative, CPS said.

“As we move into our post-COVID recovery, we must also focus on the social, emotional, and educational recovery of our students,” said Mayor Lightfoot. “Thanks to this new framework, we will be able to create the spaces and resources our students need to heal from this tortuous year and thrive. I want to thank Chicago Beyond and the Children First Fund for investing in our students and building on our ongoing work to help them rise above the challenges this pandemic has presented to their social and emotional wellbeing.”

Chicago Public Schools said they have committed to the following as part of the plan.

  • Expanding Behavioral Health Teams to all CPS schools to coordinate wellness support and ensured targeted supports reach those students that could most benefit from them.
  • Having at least one staff member in every building trained in group interventions to support students on topics like trauma, anger and depression.
  • Expanding the number of schools with at least one community partner providing support on social-emotional learning or mental health.
  • Curating a coordinated set of professional development opportunities for staff.
  • Developing resources for families and caregivers to be healers for their children, while still supporting their own healing.
  • Building a comprehensive set of resources and supports for staff wellness.
  • Establishing a robust network of community partners to support each school’s unique healing needs.

In 2019, CPS, led by the Office of Social Emotional Learning, the Children First Fund and Chicago Beyond came together to lay the groundwork for the initiative.

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