Summertime, when most schools are on break or a reduced schedule, is an important time to rest, restore and rejuvenate for students as well as teachers and support staff. But amidst the need to take a break exists the reality that support is still needed. Struggles, trauma and emotional challenges don’t take time off. In many ways, summertime is for healing. In today’s episode, we’re doing by Wenimo Okoya, Ed.D., MPH, Founder of Healing Schools Project, to explore how connection, care and celebration with educators, school leaders and students remain vital all the time. Building and bridging opportunities for the entire school community will always be a year-round priority.
Context in Culture and Community: Understanding the Concepts of Counseling
When it comes to ideas on counseling, it’s important to understand and distinguish its meaning from different perspectives. Western or European ideas of counseling that connect to mental wellness, help and advice, insights and whole-self well-being, can be different from other cultures and communities that see emotional, social and mental development differently. In today’s conversation, Executive Director Kevin Dahill-Fuchel helps explore this issue in-depth. Generational characteristics, cultural norms and community behaviors and expectations can shape how people perceive counseling and to what extent barriers exist in its application. As diverse as New York City school communities are, this is an important conversation to create stronger community connections.
Personalizing the Pivot: How Counseling In Schools Made “Virtual” Into “Actual”
When New York City schools shut down during the pandemic, it impacted well-being of students, families, schools and their communities. Counseling In Schools, already comfortable with expecting the unexpected, stayed connected to these relationships even while supporting its own people and productivity. Today Kevin Dahill-Fuchel explores the lessons and learnings this “pivot” manifested as Counseling In Schools prioritized people over problems – yet those problems became acute. Digital citizenry became essential. Safety, security and routine that are safe harbors for many during the school day were suddenly recalibrated. Even activities that help students grow, like movement, dance or music, required new outlets. And parents, caregivers and school staff required new levels of care and attention. Counseling In Schools remained among the partners in their lives that were constant and predictable. Learn how these experiences have helped shape our commitment to relationship building and community connections.
Security, Safety and the School Environment
In today’s conversation Kevin Dahill-Fuchel and Shana Bennett, Social Worker Supervisor at New York PS 171 explore security and safety. Beyond the essential safety concerns at school and among school faculty, there is a more profound understanding necessary of what “security” means for different students and children from unique family and social dynamics. Made especially relevant with safety protocols throughout the pandemic and recent events in Texas and elsewhere, it’s critical that school environments understand and respond to anxiety and fear inside the classroom and beyond. How can school communities manage disruption? Respond to escalating events or feelings? Differences in opinions and perspectives that impact and inform entire schools? Join us as we explore these topics and more.
Coping with Covid: Unique Impact on Teachers and School Staff
Kevin Dahill-Fuchel, Executive Director for Counseling in Schools, joins us for a wide-ranging conversation on how the pandemic has uniquely shaped the experience for teachers and staff in New York City schools. Kevin shares his expert insights on how responsibilities for teachers have shifted, the strain on mental and emotional well-being, and how the demands for resiliency among teachers have increased the need for systemic support. Join us for this important discussion on how education and the classroom experience for teachers and staff are undergoing transformation, and how communities can be more involved in the impact.
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