Fix School Discipline Toolkit for Educators - Page 61

schools, HEARTS provides on-site psychotherapy and mental health consultation three days per week. In surveys, school staff at these schools report a 57% increase in their knowledge about trauma and its effects on children, and a 64% increase in their use of trauma-sensitive classroom school practices. At El Dorado Elementary School, where HEARTS has been in operation for 4 years and where the school consistently tracked office discipline referral data, staff reported a 32% decrease in such referrals and a 42% decrease in violent student incidents after the first year of HEARTS implementation. School staff at target sites have told HEARTS that the training and support has changed their perspective from “these are problem children” to “these are scared and hurt children.” A principal at one of the HEARTS’ schools stated: [This] has shifted the way we discipline students at the school. We are a lot more empathetic. We take more time to allow kids to cool off, to have those meltdowns and then come back without being suspended or sent home. Getting at that Cradle to Prison pipeline, we’re not reproducing the same model of ‘oh, you’re out of here,’ ostracizing kids and sending them home for things that they may feel are out of their control. To learn more about trauma sensitive schools and read an interview with HEARTS Project leaders, visit www.FixSchoolDiscipline.org 59