EDWARDSVILLE - Edwardsville Superintendent Dr. Patrick Shelton and the District 7 system is reaching out to students who are dealing with many different types of emotions as they continue to navigate through the COVID-19 Pandemic and virtual learning.

Dr. Shelton sent a note out to parents and thanked them and their families for their cooperation as they work through the pandemic.

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“This is an important time for our students and families,” he said. “We are dealing with many different facets of life that bring about many different emotions. However, one constant is that District #7 will continue to provide support to our school communities. Our focus is to bring awareness, address areas of concern and offer resources so that the social and emotional needs of our students and staff are met. That involves teaching important academic skills and supporting a student’s social-emotional learning (SEL).

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“We believe that SEL is the foundation on which academic learning takes place and we have taken the steps to ensure our teachers and staff are deepening their understanding of SEL so they can model SEL in lessons and daily interactions. Embedding elements of Social Emotional Learning into academic instruction is important. As such, we have invested in various resources to help implement SEL more effectively. One of these resources includes Panorama Education. Panorama Education is a tool that allows the school to better understand what competencies students struggle with and offers a Playbook of activities to support this learning.”

Dr. Shelton shared that this week January 18-21, they will ask each child to take a brief survey, which will take approximately 20-25 minutes to complete. He said the survey will ask students about their social-emotional competencies and well-being, and the support they feel in their educational environment. He added that research shows that these skills are important to academic achievement.

“Each year, students will take this survey in the fall, winter, and spring to assess progress and measure student growth in the areas of self-awareness, self-management, self-efficacy, grit, emotional regulation, sense of belonging, and growth mindset,” he said. “The survey results will be used to identify and support social-emotional learning. This will help us to ensure that our instructional approach in supporting SEL is on track and to ensure that as a District, we are doing what we need to do in order to meet students’ social-emotional needs in this ever-changing world. We know that when students feel confident in their abilities and value their class, they are better able to achieve their full potential.”

Dr. Shelton encouraged anyone with questions about the survey, please feel free to reach out to Beth Jacobs, Coordinator of Assessment, Instructional Technology & Professional Learning via email at ejacobs@ecusd7.org or by phone at 618-656-6055.

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