Social Emotional Learning (SEL)
Social Emotional Learning (SEL) is broadly understood as a process through which individuals build awareness and skills in managing emotions, setting goals, establishing relationships, and making responsible decisions that support success in school and in life. When we think of educating the whole child, their social and emotional development must be considered as a part of overall instruction. Every other school year, school districts must use one of the professional learning days funded under RCW 28A.150.415 to train staff on SEL or SEL-related topics. For more information on this requirement, please review the Professional Learning Day Guidance.
Washington SEL in the Spotlight
Washington continues to receive national recognition for SEL programs run through OSPI.
“It’s wonderful to see OSPI’s hard work recognized. Washington’s engagement in SEL is crucial to the health, well-being and futures of our students, schools and communities.”
Tammy Bolen ~ Social Emotional Learning Program Supervisor, OSPI
The Washington state Legislature authorized the Social Emotional Learning (SEL) Advisory Committee to continue to develop statewide support to advance and promote SEL.
The SEL Professional Learning Network provides Washington state education professionals with SEL-related learning opportunities, including webinars, peer-to-peer exchange series, individualized support, and more.
Review SEL resources to help implement social emotional learning, including equity tools, learning activities, and related briefs.
- Washington Standards
The Washington Social Emotional Learning (SEL) standards and benchmarks were adopted in January 2020.
The SEL standards and benchmarks were developed through the lens of four guiding principles: equity, cultural responsiveness, universal design, and trauma-informed practices.
- Washington Developed Resources—SEL Implementation
Social Emotional Learning (SEL) is broadly understood as a process through which individuals build awareness and skills in managing emotions, setting goals, establishing relationships, and making responsible decisions that support success in school and in life. Below are several Washington-developed resources available for implementation and updates on the program.
SEL implementation is crucial in building SEL in education and providing whole-child support for our students. This section provides a variety of documents that can help walk through the SEL implementation process including the adopted Washington SEL Standards, benchmarks, and indicators.
- Additional Resources
Trauma-Informed SEL Practices
A trauma-informed child and family service system responds to the impact of traumatic stress on children, caregivers, and service providers. Programs and agencies within these systems infuse and sustain trauma awareness, knowledge, and skills into their organizational cultures, practices, and policies.
A trauma-informed school recognizes that trauma affects staff, students, families, communities, and systems. A trauma-informed child and family service system responds to the impact of traumatic stress on children, caregivers, and service providers. Programs and agencies within these systems infuse and sustain trauma awareness, knowledge, and skills into their organizational cultures, practices, and policies.
By implementing a trauma sensitive approach, school personnel act as a protective factor in the lives of students - beginning the journey to health, building resilience, and supporting student success.
- Trauma Sensitive Schools Training Package (National Center of Safe and Supportive Learning Environments)
- Improving School Outcomes for Trauma-Impacted Students,
- National Dropout Prevention Center
- How to Support Someone Who Has Experienced Trauma Infographic
- Dos and Don'ts of a Trauma Informed Compassionate Classroom Infographic
- Physical Impact of Trauma Infographic
- Impacts of Trauma Infographic
- Trauma Informed Support for Children Infographic
- The Pair Tree of ACEs
- Community Resilience-Focused Certified Training
- The Heart of Learning and Teaching: Compassion,
- Resiliency, and Academic Success Handbook
The Harmony SEL modules are free. Sanford Harmony Academy provides educators with professional learning and curriculum resources that support healthy relationships both inside and outside of the classroom.
SEL and Equity
SEL and equity work hand-in-hand! Below are resources to help understand how both are integrated in schools.
The briefs in this section are high-level overviews of SEL, geared toward a specific audience or topic.
- SEL Educational Leaders Brief | Simplified Chinese| Spanish
- SEL Educator Brief| Simplified Chinese | Spanish
- SEL Parents and Families Brief |Simplified Chinese| Spanish
- SEL Community and Youth Organizations Brief |Simplified Chinese | Spanish
- Culturally Responsive SEL |Simplified Chinese | Spanish
- SEL Equity Brief |Simplified Chinese | Spanish
This online module is designed to build knowledge and awareness for teachers, administrators, and school staff of what social-emotional learning (SEL) is and why it is important. In addition, the module explains how to implement and integrate SEL into different contexts in a culturally responsive way.
We are excited to launch the Academic Integration Module which will help educators integrate social, emotional and academic learning. Educators will also learn about building a supportive classroom environment that focuses on equity.