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Trauma Sensitive Schools

Trauma-sensitive schools are uniquely positioned to understand and respond to the impact crises, and the resulting trauma, can have on students, families, and educators. Developing a deep understanding of trauma’s impact on student success helps educators recognize that learning requires safety, trusting relationships, connection, equity and belonging, adaptability, and working together as a school community. This understanding can guide changes in practice and decision-making processes, which lead to inclusive and equitable school cultures that help strengthen student learning and foster a sense of belonging.

Once schools understand the educational impacts of trauma, they can become safe, supportive environments where students make the positive connections with adults and peers they might otherwise push away, calm their emotions so they can focus and behave appropriately, and feel confident enough to advance their learning—in other words, schools can make trauma sensitivity a regular part of how the school is run.

Trauma and Learning Policy Initiative

Updated August 30, 2021 10:38am