Building Capacity of Staff
All Ulster BOCES Student Based Programs leadership teams, in collaboration with their site based wellness team and providers such as Ramapo for Children and Instructional Services, will design on-going professional development for all staff; addressing safety and wellness during the ongoing COVID-19 public health emergency.
Such school based professional development and intervention strategies shall build individual capacity in the context of the school community, develop empathy and resilience and understanding of restorative practices for students, faculty, and staff. This planning will include appropriate child-centered and developmentally appropriate responses to non-compliance of safety practices. Professional development will be offered on, but not limited to:
- COVID-19 Support
- Social Justice - The need for professional development and discussion regarding:
- a unified message, through the use of positive messaging and signage, across all school based programs,
- training and support for staff in educating students to be up-standers and allies in promoting equity and inclusion,
- explicit and implicit bias in our programs, and
- learning how to support students who have experienced or witnessed race, gender, or LGTBQ based discrimination in or out of schools should be outlined.
- Social & Emotional Learning - Focusing on 5 competencies:
- Social awareness
- Relationship skills
- Responsible decision-making
- Transformative SEL elaborates on Social Emotional Learning focusing on
- being culturally and linguistically responsive and
- equitably meeting the needs of students and adults, including the implications of culture, identity, agency, belonging, and engagement.
- Restorative Practices Build on existing strengths. Address behavior from a whole-child perspective, developing the above SEL competencies, guided by sensitivity toward Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACES) and trauma-informed practices. Implement processes and approaches designed to build and repair meaningful relationships.
- Wellness Supports for all staff - Additional supports for staff wellness shall include:
- access to the Employee Assistance Program (EAP) through the BOCES agency
- ongoing wellness supports provided by Instructional Services.
- Specific Trauma-informed supports, both proactive and responsive, needed for all staff, being mindful to include itinerant service providers, and IS staff.
- Specifically train staff who will interfacing with students at arrival and visitors throughout the school day. Sensitivity needs to be developed in care for fragile students and visitors.