Angela Benedetto, Ph.D.
I taught Family and Consumer Science in a large urban high school upstate New York in the city of Schenectady, for many years. Schenectady has the reputation of being a tough school city with an extremely diverse population of students, many of whom struggled with poverty and some who were at risk.
The first thing you need to know is that the overwhelming majority of Congress members, state legislators and local council members have never heard of emotional intelligence learning or, as educators tend to call it, social-emotional learning.
Sadly, local school board members are very rarely up to speed themselves.
Social and emotional learning (SEL) initiatives can encompass different strategies at every school or school district, and educational approaches to SEL may not look the same from classroom to classroom. As school districts across the country are integrating SEL into the curriculum, the daily educational environment for children has evolved from a primarily intellectual-based learning approach to emotional growth exercises as well.