Caring School Community

Elementary SELect Program

Program Design and Implementation Support

Caring School Community, a program designed for use in kindergarten through sixth grade, is organized around four core educational practices: Class Meetings (30-35 per grade), Cross-Age Buddies, Homeside Activities, and Schoolwide Community-Building Activities. Class Meetings present a schedule of lessons and activities to be implemented throughout the school year. Forty Cross-Age Buddies activities promote bonding between pairs of older and younger students while at the same time supporting exploration of a wide range of academic subjects. Homeside Activities are implemented once or twice a month. These are first reviewed in class, then completed  at home with caregivers, and then reflected upon and concluded in class. Schoolwide Community-Building Activities are implemented throughout the school year to build relationships, share knowledge, and promote pride in the school environment. Caring School Community offers suggestions to support English Language Learners, and Homeside Activities are available in English and Spanish. Initial training for the Caring School Community program typically lasts half a day to two full days and is not required. Caring School Community offers a train-the-trainer system to support sustainability.

Evidence of Effectiveness

Caring School Community has been evaluated in multiple studies (three randomized control trials, two quasi-experimental studies). The largest sample included 40 schools. Students have been followed over a five-year period.