By Haley Sirota, CEI Intern, & Dana Asby, CEI Director of Innovation & Research Support
Starting this Thursday, May 16th, the Childhood Trauma Learning Collaborative (C-TLC) will be hosting live webinars on mental health support in educational settings. The C-TLC Webinar Series is a unique opportunity for educators to engage with experts in the field of trauma. They are hosted live by Center for Educational Improvement (CEI) associates who have been researching, lecturing, and working with educators in the field to find solutions to the problems that trauma creates in schools and the surrounding communities.
Learning More about How Trauma Affects the Brain
The first webinar, “Neurobiology and Executive Functioning,” will be presented by Dr. Hilary Hodgson. Join us from 4:00-5:30 p.m. EDT this Thursday when Dr. Hodgson will be discussing the neurobiology of trauma and its effects on cognition, judgment, and academic learning. This webinar will address some of the concerns of youth trauma, an important target to be explored across all school settings.
As a practicing clinical psychologist and researcher, Dr. Hodgson specializes in the study of traumatic stress, with research focusing on childhood trauma along with the development and evaluation of treatment approaches. In addition, Dr. Hodgson serves as the Director of Research Operations at the Trauma Center and is a Research Assistant Professor of Clinical Practice at Suffolk University. Complete your registration for the webinar here.
Benefits of Attending a Webinar
This webinar series, which we present to you free of charge, is a service CEI hopes to provide to our community of educators in an effort to share valuable resources and to learn more from superintendents, principals, school psychologists, teachers, and other educators about how trauma affects their student populations. This series is an excellent opportunity to educate your school staff about effective responses to trauma. By attending one or more of our webinars you can:
- Learn about the science behind trauma and mindfulness
- Better understand how to respond to students demonstrating symptoms of trauma
- Have a live conversation with experts in the field
- Get your questions about trauma answered
- Learn about best practices from our presenters and other educators
- Start a conversation in your district or school about trauma-informed care.
Talking to Parents about Mindfulness
CEI will continue to offer more webinars on topics related to trauma and mindfulness throughout the summer. In addition to Thursday’s webinar, we have two amazing presenters scheduled for May and June.
On May 23rd from 7:00-8:15 p.m., Suzan Mullane, MS., Ed., will lead “Parents and Compassion,” a webinar on the importance of schools engaging parents in discussions about compassion to buffer against trauma and create more connected communities. She will be explaining the steps to engaging with families about trauma and how to foster compassion between those families and their schools. She has vast experience working closely with schools and families dealing with trauma in West Virginia and other areas of the country. In her webinar, she will teach educators how to:
- Help families understand how trauma impacts children
- Show families, including extended families, how they can help alleviate trauma
- Increase compassionate interactions between schools and families.
Register for Ms. Mullane’s webinar here.
Creating a Mindfulness Practice in Your School
We know that mindfulness has many benefits for our staff and students, including increased executive functioning; lower rates of stress, anxiety, and depression; and improvements in physical health. In Dr. Michele Rivers Murphy’s upcoming webinar “Mindfulness Practices in Schools” on June 6th from 7:00 p.m.-8:15 p.m., learn how to integrate mindfulness into the school day in your district or building.
Dr. Rivers Murphy’s research addresses challenges associated with childhood trauma with a focus on topics in current neuroscience. She will be discussing strategies for introducing mindfulness in schools, as well as discussing some of the challenges. Kate Retzel, principal of Lee Elementary School, will be joining Dr. Rivers Murphy to discuss her experience implementing a year-long mindfulness program in her Pre-K-6 school. Hear about how it influenced her students, staff, and school culture. Register for Dr. Rivers Murphy’s webinar here.
On April 29th, at the C-TLC Kick Off event, Dr. Rivers Murphy presented on the cultivation of mindfulness practices in school communities. Ms. Mullane discussed the opioid crisis in schools and how it affects schools and the surrounding communities. Dr. Hodgson also presented on trauma’s effect on the brain, body, and behavior. For more information on the C-TLC and to access these presentations and more resources for school-based mental health services, visit the Childhood-Trauma Learning Collaborate page on the website for Center for Educational Improvement.