Over the past year and a half, the staff at The Dragonfly House have been working closely with key personnel at Davie County Schools to create our own, local, community-specific version of a trauma-informed/trauma-sensitive school and community. This is called “Compassionate & Resilient Schools” (CRS). Our CRS model is a whole school, whole child, trauma-sensitive framework that supports all students by creating Compassionate & Resilient schools that will improve academic, behavioral, and social-emotional outcomes for students.
It is our mission to show compassion and promote resiliency both in our schools and in our communities. We will be intentional about building relationships with all students so that we may more effectively prevent, recognize and heal childhood trauma by creating safe and nurturing relationships and learning environments.
Childhood trauma can have a direct, immediate, and potentially overwhelming impact on the ability of a child to learn. We want educators and school professionals to understand the role of trauma, its effect on children and learning, and how they can change methods of interacting and responding to children impacted by trauma. By adopting a Compassionate & Resilient approach, schools undertake a shift in perspective at the staff and organizational level to recognize, understand and address the learning needs of children impacted by negative experiences. This requires a commitment to shaping school culture, practices, and policies to be sensitive to the needs of traumatized learners. This effort positively impacts schools and changes the life-trajectory of vulnerable students.
It is a fact that all schools and educators are working with children who have experienced trauma, but you may not ever know who these students are or what their trauma experience was/is. A Compassionate & Resilient school operates much like a wheelchair ramp does for handicap accessibility… it exists for those students who we already know need it, it is there for those students who may not have been recognized as in need of it, for students who may not need it now but could need it in the future, and those who may not ever need it but having it in place teaches them compassion from modeling the mindset and perspective shift that their peers and teachers display within a Compassionate and Resilient school framework.
By joining together to provide education, training, resources, awareness, and support, we can open our eyes to the realities our children are facing and give them a successful learning experience that will only help them grow into successful, productive members of society. By joining together as a community, a children’s advocacy center, and a school system, we can extend our reach and catch children before they fall. Please take some time to visit our website at www.compassionateresilientschools.com to learn more about this initiative and the data, reasons, & resources behind it.
Currently Mocksville Elementary School and South Davie Middle School are piloting the program in Davie County. Davie County Schools has designated through their Strategic Plan that by June 2023, DCS will create and enhance learning environments that support and prepare students socially & emotionally as measured by annual student & staff surveys, discipline, attendance, dropout data, and counseling data. One strategy for this is to Implement a compassionate and resilient schools approach district-wide.
In Davidson County Schools, Churchland Elementary School and Tyro Elementary School are piloting the program and have just begun their first steps of implementation.
We are excited to be partnering with Davie County Schools to create this model and to be working with each of the individual schools and their staff to create real change – change in mindset and change for our children.
“It is hard to play chess in a hurricane, just as it is hard to focus on school learning when struggling with trauma. However, teachers who are kind during the storm increase the likelihood that students will return to chess after the wind stops blowing. Long after students may have forgot what you tried to teach them, they will remember how you treated them. Whatever your approach to teaching and discipline, remember to treat your students with respect and compassion.” ~The Heart of Learning and Teaching: Compassion, Resiliency, and Academic Success
Compassionate and Resilient Schools Website: www.compassionateresilientschools.com