Supported

In addition to improving students' academic performance, research shows that supportive schools also help prevent a host of negative consequences, including isolation, violent behavior, dropping out of school, and suicide. Central to a supportive school are teachers, administrators, and other caring adults who take a personal interest in each student and in the success of each student.

School and communities committed to educating the whole child connect students with caring adults throughout a student's school career through a variety of positive relationships. These relationships reinforce academic achievement and social, civic, ethical, and emotional development.

Ensuring that each student is healthy, safe, engaged, supported, and challenged requires us to continually ask questions and examine evidence related to implementation. ASCD's indicators of a whole child approach provide a guide for continual school and community improvement and serve as a definition of what a whole child approach to education truly requires. Download the set of supported indicators (PDF).

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From the Whole Child Blog

School Improvement Success: School Leaders Discuss the ASCD Whole Child Approach

ASCD is dedicated to excellence in learning, teaching, and leading. At the heart of our work is our commitment to the whole child.

The ASCD Whole Child approach is a pathway to sustainable school improvement—that is, by creating a culture and climate where students are healthy, safe, engaged, supported, and challenged, schools will increase student engagement, increase attendance, reduce disciplinary referrals, increase academic credits earned, and increase graduation rates. The approach pulls together current school initiatives for greater support and strengthens school and classroom strategies to meet the needs of each student.

In 2012, ASCD selected 10 schools from a nationwide pool of 142 applicants to participate in the Whole Child Network, a three-year research effort to evaluate implementation of ASCD's Whole Child approach. The Whole Child Network provided organization and support for member schools implementing ASCD's Whole Child practices with their students, staff, and communities.

On this episode of the Whole Child Podcast, host Donna Snyder, ASCD's manager of Whole Child Implementation, and guests explore the approach's process, implementation, and outcomes.

Listen to the episode below or download here.

Panelists

  • Jeremy Nichols, former principal, Odyssey Community School, San Martin, Calif. (current principal, Hilmar High School, Hilmar, Calif.)
  • John Wesolowski, former assistant principal, Finegayan Elementary School, Dededo, Guam (current assistant principal, Capt. H.B. Price Elementary School, Agana, Guam)
  • Pamela Delly, principal, Urban Community School, Cleveland, Ohio
  • Sandra D'Avilar, principal, Teunis G. Bergen School, P.S. 9, New York, N.Y.

"The many accomplishments that our school community has gained from being a part of the Whole Child Network of schools was truly a testament of how focused and determined our entire school has been. The fabric of collaboration and commitment has been laid and we are ready to sustain the great work we've started." —Sandra D'Avilar

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Whole Child Examples

Community Example

School Provides a Foundation to a Lifetime of Knowledge

Anansi Charter School’s mission is to provide a nurturing and supportive environment where children of all races, creeds, religions, and special needs develop a love of learning and acquire a strong foundation on which to build a lifetime of knowledge.

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Designed for use in schools and districts around the world, the free ASCD School Improvement Tool offers educators a comprehensive and completely online needs assessment. Based on your unique results, the tool points you to professional development resources that can help immediately address school-wide challenges.

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About ASCD

ASCD is the global leader in developing and delivering innovative programs, products, and services that empower educators to support the success of each learner. Comprising 125,000 members—superintendents, principals, teachers, professors, and advocates from more than 138 countries—the ASCD community also includes 56 affiliate organizations. To learn more about how ASCD supports educators as they learn, teach, and lead, visit www.ascd.org.