School-level SEL


  • Imagine a school where the leaders consistently model good practices, proactively train staff, welcome parents as partners, focus on relationships (student-student, adult-student, adult-adult), use positive discipline policies, and invest time and resources in and out of the classroom. Research shows that social and emotional learning (SEL) helps create and is most effective in safe and supportive learning environments like these.

    Use our School Theory of Action framework and resources, outlined below, to learn more about how to implement SEL in your school.

    • Develop a vision that prioritizes academic, social, and emotional learning.
    • Conduct an SEL-related resources and needs assessment to inform goals for schoolwide SEL.
    • Design and implement effective professional learning programs to build internal capacity for academic, social, and emotional learning.
    • Adopt and implement evidence-based programs for academic, social, and emotional learning across all grades.
    • Integrate SEL at all three levels of school functioning (curriculum and instruction, schoolwide practices and policies, family and community partnerships).
    • Establish processes to continuously improve academic, social, and emotional learning through inquiry and data collection.

    Ask Yourself

    • Do all staff and students know, understand, and agree about the school’s vision and approach?
    • Are you clear about your school’s strengths, challenges, and opportunities?
    • Do you have a step-by-step timeline for implementing key aspects of your plan, from staff development to program adoption and regular monitoring of progress?

    Learn more through our district theory of action and rubric.

  • SEL in Action

    Learn more about what you can do to promote SEL. Advice for: Principals, teachers,
    support staff, and parents.

    In Elementary School

    Published by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation in April 2017, this brief summarizes the benefits and recommended strategies for effective implementation. Learn more.

    SEL in Washoe County, Nev.

    Watch Our Video