Showing posts with label social learning. Show all posts
Showing posts with label social learning. Show all posts

Thursday, November 10, 2022

Hockomock Area YMCA’s Social Emotional Learning (SEL) Network provides a safe space

Hockomock Area YMCA (@HockomockYMCA) tweeted on Wed, Nov 09, 2022:
The Hockomock Area YMCA's Social Emotional Learning (SEL) Network provides a safe space for parents and caregiver discussion around youth mental well-being and strategies. 
Visit for more info. 
To register, email

Shared from Twitter ->

Hockomock Area YMCA’s Social Emotional Learning (SEL) Network
Hockomock Area YMCA’s Social Emotional Learning (SEL) Network

Friday, March 26, 2021

Nieman Lab: "The first challenge is data... The second is money"

"Social media disinformation discussions are going in circles. Here's how to change that."

"On Thursday, the CEOs of Facebook, Google, and Twitter will testify before Congress about online disinformation. Even before the gavel bangs, we can predict what will happen. Some members of Congress will demand that social media platforms do more to stop viral falsehoods from damaging democracy and triggering violence. Others will warn of needlessly restricting speech and say it could even inflame fringe elements and drive them to less-governed spaces.

This same argument repeats itself after every crisis, from Christchurch to QAnon to COVID-19. Why can’t we break the impasse? Because the debate about countering disinformation can itself be a fact-free zone: long on theories, short on evidence. We need better expertise, and that means empowering experts."
Continue reading the article online

Photo illustration by Slate. Photo by Olena Poliakevych/iStock/Getty Images Plus
Photo illustration by Slate. Photo by Olena Poliakevych/iStock/Getty Images Plus

Friday, December 25, 2020

Franklin (MA) School Committee meeting recap - Dec 22. 2020

Quick Recap:
  • Donna Grady, FPS teacher and FEA president spoke about reframing the discussion on kids missing out. They are not, they are all in the same boat. (I would add: health is more important than education - without good health, you can't learn. And it would be good to recognize that this pandemic is a time to think about our overall learning processes. How do we learn? How can we learn? The specific topics and curriculum items mean less than the developing the capability to learn.)
  • excellent presentations from ECDC and the Performing Arts dept showcasing the work and learning being done in trying circumstances. (See how we can learn when we put our minds together to do so)
  • First draft of school calendar for 2020-2021 shared
  • Superintendent's goals were approved. The sharing pre-meeting had caused some kerfuffle among community members who misinterpreted what they were lacking the full context. (A solution to this would be a 'cover note/memo' to better frame the doc when shared pre-meeting next time. Not sharing the doc before hand is not an acceptable solution. Although it is an 'easy way' out, it does nothing to build the trusting relationship with the community that is very much a work in progress)
  • Re-opening status - lengthy discussion with SchComm Q&A and only a few community comments this time around. Plan to bring K-1 back in person still being developed. Finally a question on ESP's use as subs and what happens to that learning time? (it doesn't always get made up - and this has been gong on for some time, well before the pandemic) Staffing in the pandemic continues to be working a tightrope. If the numbers change (in the wrong direction) expect more remote learning days.
Photos captured during the meeting broadcast and shared via Twitter can be found in one album


As with most meetings in this pandemic period, I took my notes via Twitter during the meeting reporting in real-time via the virtual session.
The Twitter hashtag can be found online  #schcom1222

  • Getting ready for the School Committee meeting tonight, agenda doc is here:  #schcom1222
  • Meeting starts on time and the recording allows me to catch the gavel this time ( yeah!) #schcom1222 one in route to meeting (D'Angelo) other six present remotely or in person for this hybrid session
  • #schcom1222 participation over 100 at this point with a good # of teachers showing up via the names 
Citizen comments
  • Donna Grady, FPA teacher and FEA president speaking in citizen comments in regards to comments from prior meeting, should not be pitted teacher vs family
  • Need to reframe the comment on kids missing out, they are all in the same situation, they are not missing anything. This is not normal, if we push kids to school, they won't be interacting, they'll be sitting in desks separated, we all want folks to be safe #schcom1222
  • #schcom1222 we are in this together, please help us do this, we (teachers and staff) can't do this alone. We are not there yet and the situation is causing trauma, if academic progress is goal, we need to meet the basic safety goals first, staff and students are showing symptoms
  • Of trauma. Kids are told they are safe when they know other students are home in quarantine. Teachers are going above and beyond. They are frustrated about not doing their best, this will take months to repair. #schcom1222 please put mental health of our staff first
  • FHS representative says students understand everyone is doing their best. In person attendance dropping, many be multiple reasons for that. In a reselect process the numbers may change #schcom1222
Superintendents report
  • Superintendent report: update from DESE around student mental health and connection, instructional time daily to connect with teachers 34 hours over a ten day period, 40 hours over 10 4 asynchronous. Looking for consistency district 2 district. Did complete a survey #schcom1222
  • FPS meeting requirements. CARES funding deadline extended to Dec 2021, which will help to fulfill due to supply chain issues. #schcom1222 
  • Not universal on snow day for last Thursday. Compliments to teachers etc for doing fun stuff last Thursday.
  • This is Beth Simon's last night supporting the SchComm by doing notes. #schcom1222 not sure what funding does to the other building schedules for HVAC changes, purifiers are in or being deployed. Miss snow days but will be happy in June.
  • Guest presentations: ECDC up to share updates to talking to the doc… #schcom1222 timely slide picks up points being made in comments
  • #schcom1222 taking time to build relationships, yes it may not be 6' but the little ones don't understand. Pics of staff with and without masks available. BTW participation up to 135+ in Zoom, 12 more viewing live stream, some #? also via the 2 cable channels
  • #schcom1222 went on a leaf hunt, and integrated leaves into various lessons there is an explanation and story for each photo on the slide. Need to set students up for success.#schcom1222 monthly newsletter went out today, folks overwhelmed, how can she best reach folks in a manner that resonates. (Video link in presentation doc)
  • #schcom1222 taking registration for next school year, hopefully it will be fully in person. Helpful info on the sheet here remote learning bags coming via COVID-19 funding.
  • #schcom1222 positive comments from the SchComm members on update from ECDC. This shows the amount of work and level of commitment to do this in person. Enjoy the time off.
  • Next up, performing arts update from Diane Plouffe kudos to staff and students for rolling through this craziness. Rehearsal in the fall outdoor for middle school band #schcom1222
  • presentation doc being shared and talked to for this update #schcom1222 the team!
  • New standards are a challenge with COVID restrictions #schcom1222 singing indoors currently not permitted
  • Can you imagine elementary music without singing or sharing instruments? They are finding a way #schcom1222 a virtual chorus rehearsal on Wednesdays. No beginner lessons as lifelong learning is not operating; over 500 students signed up
  • Sad looking rehearsal space, when used by students, everything is wiped down before students leave, wipes on music stands. #schcom1222
  • Exploring bringing band back in, working on details for approval through the channels. Sample horn mask, bell cover in plain black, to out logo on would be too much #schcom1222 ventilation being updated over the winter break.
  • Brief video clip shared of music performance with teacher performing with some students in room, some remote #schcom1222
  • The "brady bunch" video is not easy to do, each 3 minute piece takes about 24 hours of prep. #schcom1222
  • 60 students in middle school orchestra over 100 at FHS, expand the timing in the prior tweet by these #s to see total work required #schcom1222 
  • Drama club performed Clue on stage using same precautions as athletes did before rehearsal.
  • Video of 3 cohorts and then mixed with the students remote #schcom1222 
  • 8 students going to all state competition
  • resharing the presentation on performing arts, lots of the links are live music performances and worth checking out #schcom1222
  • Very positive comments from SchComm #schcom1222  
Superintendent goals
  • Moving along to superintendent goals, after subcommittee worked on them. Did get feedback on goals, from the posting pre-meeting. There is not enough of a focus on anti-racism, it is in the district improvement plan but in …
  • The broader context while not in the 2 shared it is embedded elsewhere and driving the work on this. Wants to be careful in sharing this. #schcom1222 there is a need to do more Communication, centrally and new mediums to explore. Collaboration folded in
  • Looking to expand Communication channels to share with the Community, i.e. blog. (Has been 'coming soon' since just after arrival) #schcom1222
  • Goal doc linked to… #schcom1222 sets a foundation for future development motion and second, passes via roll call 6-0-1 (6 for, 0 no, 1 absent)
2020-2021 calendar
Re-opening report
  • Also for discussion the re-opening report #schcom1222 some of the 'red' status is due to timing, only .03 over the red line last week #schcom1222 priority standards for  learning and essential content
  • Did close survey on the K-1 families and staff, need to process the data, 360 responses from families, so good return rate. #schcom1222 some districts going remote post holiday, we are not yet planning to do so. In person/hybrid is valuable.
  • #schcom1222 looking at process of taking in reports and do contact tracing (will be complicated) will require administrator follow up, likely not as responsive; hence to have the first day as a remote learning day to allow for processing the reports from the break
  • Looking at Wednesday at FHS to provide some relief with common planning time, looking to add 2 asynchronous periods for planning, could also address student stress re: screen time. Seeing increase in absences, and coverage challenges. #schcom1222
  • #schcom1222 guidance has changed in the last week or so, DESE is now more aligned with the CDC and Dept of Public Health: adjusting the Communications accordingly. Flu vaccine date postponed until Feb, already 80% of students have reported compliance. Notice coming out
  • Looking to do a baseline survey in Jan for all staff, using other sources of info to obtain feedback. #schcom1222 K-1 summary should be available by next meeting, did put out a call for activity monitors and subs, be vigilant during break so we can be safe when we return
  • Q on sub rates and sub coverage options. Miriam provided the rates overview. Sara answered the what if questions and it depends (really it does) Elise remarks on the coverage puzzle is monumental. Not sustainable #schcom1222
  • #schcom1222 some districts have K-1 in school, most are hybrid, split between fully remote vs fully in person. Development of 2 artifacts to help support teachers and families for K-1 students. Sub availability due to timing of finger prints, cori checks
  • Using ESPs as subs does affect time delivering services (this happened pre-COVID-19 and the time of delivery is not easily made up if ever). #schcom1222 
  • Should consider more than one day for remote coming back may not be enough time to fully access the data
  • Extremely frustrating to get the COVID letters daily, students are staying home to go elsewhere over the break, but we can't. Timing on the cohort letters and knowing when the reports were noted. #schcom1222 
  • Moving to info matters
Subcommittee reports
  • Need to set up budget meetings #schcom1222 good showing at FinCom reported (really, not by my notes. SchCom/Central Office left info unshared when they had an opportunity to do so). People come here because of the schools, and being fiscally responsible.
  • Community relations, trying to get date for meeting; date being worked for legislative forum. Policy met on 12/17 with plans for moving; facilities update lengthy errors in presentation were after analysis and did not effect results. Population trends similar #schcom1222
  • #schcom1222 additional data coming mid January and get ready to summarize for SchCom date TBD 
  • Joint PCC rescheduled for January. Wellness exploring hydroponic expansion beyond FHS. Working on another challenge next meeting Jan 12
  • Safe Coalition update to SWAC presented earlier today, adapting and evolving to conditions. #schcom1222
Future agenda items
  • Student opportunity Act plan coming up for vote. FHS update, personnel update, and Oak St elementary will be a highlight. 
Consent agenda
  • Consent agenda motion to accept, second, passes 6-0-1 (6 for, 0 no, 1 absent) via roll call (D'Angelo absent) #schcom1222
Executive session
  • Motion to enter executive session, not to return to open meeting, second, approved 6-0-1 (see before in thread) via roll call
  • #schcom1222 that's all for tonight (and I think for meetings in 2020!) Catch you all later
Franklin (MA) School Committee meeting recap - Dec 22. 2020
Franklin (MA) School Committee meeting recap - Dec 22. 2020

Saturday, July 18, 2020

In the News: "much of the evidence is inconclusive"

From the Milford Daily News, articles of interest for Franklin:
"What role children play in the coronavirus pandemic is the hot-button question of the summer as kids relish their free time while schools labor over how to resume classes. 
The Trump administration says the science “is very clear,” but many doctors who specialize in pediatrics and infectious diseases say much of the evidence is inconclusive. 
“There are still a lot of unanswered questions. That is the biggest challenge,” said Dr. Sonja Rasmussen, a pediatrics professor at the University of Florida and former scientist at the U.S. Centers of Disease Control and Prevention. 
Several studies suggest, but don’t prove, that children are less likely to become infected than adults and more likely to have only mild symptoms."
Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

The NY Times article on a related report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine

Go directly to the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine report
"Weighing the health risks of reopening K-12 schools in fall 2020 against the educational risks of providing no in-person instruction, school districts should prioritize reopening schools full time, especially for grades K-5 and students with special needs, according to a new report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. Opening schools will benefit families beyond providing education, including by supplying child care, school services, meals, and other family supports. Without in-person instruction, schools risk children falling behind academically and exacerbating educational inequities."
Continue reading the report online:

Friday, May 8, 2020

"Just Say Mindfulness" - May 15

Join Michelle Palladini, Norfolk Police Detective and King Phillip Middle School Resource Officer for an online workshop "Just Say Mindfulness" next Friday, May 15 at 12 PM!

Learn ways to empower your children with mindfulness, as a drug prevention effort. Zoom link and short video intro are below:

SAFE Coalition Inc. is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.
Topic: Just Say Mindfulness
Time: May 15, 2020 12:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 840 7601 7966
Password: 694418
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Find your local number:

Mindfulness with Officer Palladini from SAFE COALITION on Vimeo.

Monday, May 4, 2020

Podcast Recommendation: Brene Brown's "Unlocking Us"

In these challenging times, akin to the safety warning when flying, we need to put our oxygen mask on first before helping the child next to us. Taking care of ourselves, will help provide the resilience to deal with the changes each day brings.

A good nights sleep, exercise, and a healthy diet can address the physical aspects. For the mental aspects, taking only a few doses of main stream media is one step. Choosing good reading or listening also helps. 

When I walk along the side roads, I can listen to one of several podcasts. One of the new entries to my regular list is appropriate for this time. Brene Brown has introduced a new podcast "Unlocking Us". It was supposed to get a big splash entry in March at the South by Southwest Conf (SXSW) but alas the pandemic shut that down. 

Splash entry or not, Brene is a worthy listen. In this episode she talks with Dr Marc Brackett about emotional literacy. 
"Dr. Marc Brackett has dedicated his life to studying emotions and to teaching us what he’s learning. In this episode, we talk about how emotional literacy – being able to recognize, name, and understand our feelings – affects everything from learning, decision making, and creativity, to relationships, health, and performance."
Listen to the podcast here (or subscribe via one of the several podcast apps where you can find it):

Podcast Recommendation: Brene Brown's "Unlocking Us"
Podcast Recommendation: Brene Brown's "Unlocking Us"
Brene Brown is an accomplished author and speaker. She has a couple of TED Talks among several good videos to view and get the gist of what she talks about

Sunday, February 9, 2020

Franklin, MA: School Committee - Agenda - Feb 11, 2020

Vision Statement
The Franklin Public Schools will foster within its students the knowledge and skills to find and achieve satisfaction in life as productive global citizens.

“The listing of matters are those reasonably anticipated by the Chair which may be discussed at the meeting. Not all items listed may in fact be discussed and other items not listed may also be brought up for discussion to the extent permitted by law.”

I. Routine Business
A. Review of Agenda
B. Citizen’s Comments
In the spirit of open communication, “the Committee will hold a public participation segment (also called Citizen’s Comments) about matters not related to an agenda item at the beginning of each regular School Committee meeting. The Committee will listen to, but not respond to any comment made…. A Committee member may add an agenda item to a future meeting as a result of a citizen comment…. The Committee will hear public comments related to an agenda item when the Chair deems appropriate during the Committee meeting. Topics for discussion during the meeting must be limited to those items listed on the Committee meeting agenda for that evening…. ” - from Policy BEDH
C. FHS Student Representative Comments
D. Superintendent’s Report

II. Guests/Presentations
A. Jefferson Grade 5 Murals Presentation
B. Technology Presentation
C. DIP Goal #1 Update – SEL

III. Discussion/Action Items
A. Policy – 2nd Reading/Adoption
I recommend adoption of Policy EEAE – School Bus Safety as discussed.

IV. Discussion Only Items – none

V. Information Matters
A. School Committee Sub-Committee Reports (e.g. Ad Hoc Supt. Evaluation, Ad Hoc Facilities Analysis, Budget, Community Relations/Public Schools Advocacy, Policy, Transportation)
B. School Committee Liaison Reports (e.g. Joint PCC, Substance Abuse Task Force, School Wellness Advisory Council)

VI. New Business
A. To discuss any future agenda items

VII. Consent Agenda
A. Approval of Minutes
I recommend approval of the minutes from the January 28, 2020 School Committee meeting as detailed.
B. Transfers
I recommend approval of the budget transfers as detailed.
C. Music Gift
I recommend acceptance of two checks totaling $4,264.00 from Franklin Music Parents for in-house enrichment as detailed.
D. Oak Street Gift
I recommend acceptance of two checks totaling $1,145.00 from the Oak Street PCC for in-house enrichment as detailed.
E. MA All State Music Festival Trip (recurring)
I recommend approval of the request of Diane Plouffe to take music students to the MA All State Music Festival in Boston, MA on March 5 – 7, 2020 as detailed.
F. Baseball Field Trip (recurring)
I recommend approval of the request of Mr. Peri to take FHS student athletes to Cooperstown, NY from April 19 – 20, 2020 as detailed.
G. Parmenter Gift
I recommend acceptance of a check for $800.00 from the Parmenter PCC for field trips as detailed.
H. Davis Thayer Gift
I recommend acceptance of a check for $5,000.00 from the Davis Thayer PCC for field trips as detailed.
I. Annie Sullivan Gift
I recommend acceptance of a check for $1,000.00 from the Annie Sullivan PCC for in-house enrichment as detailed.
J. ECDC Gift
I recommend acceptance of a check for $1,000.00 from the Franklin Cultural Council for in-house enrichment at ECDC as detailed.
K. Keller Gr. 5 RW Zoo Field Trip
I recommend approval of the recurring Keller Grade 5 field trip to Roger Williams Zoo in Providence, RI on May 7, 2020 as detailed.
L. 3rd Grade Music Field Trip
I recommend approval of the recurring JFK/Parmenter 3rd Grade field trip to The Veteran’s Auditorium in Providence, RI on May 19, 2020 as detailed.

VIII. Payment of Bills Dr. Bergen

IX. Payroll Ms. D’Angelo

X. Executive Session
Pursuant to M.G.L. c. 30A, §21(a)(3) to discuss strategy with respect to collective bargaining with the FEA unit as an open meeting may have a detrimental effect on the bargaining position of the School Committee and the chair so declares.

XI. Adjournment

The documents released for this meeting can be found online. Some documents will be posted after the meeting.

Another detail shot of the Jefferson Elementary mural.... books parachuting from an airplane
"Another detail shot of the Jefferson Elementary mural.... books parachuting from an airplane"

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Franklin Public Schools: Social-Emotional Learning (SEL) “Focus of the Month”

"Dear Franklin Families!

Franklin Public Schools (FPS) remains committed to supporting student development in the five Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL) Social-Emotional Learning (SEL) competency areas: Self-Awareness, Self-Management, Social Awareness, Relationship Skills, and Responsible Decision-Making.

To accomplish this, we are excited to roll out the Franklin Public Schools (FPS) SEL "Focus of the Month". Our goal is to provide teachers and families with strategies that support students' social and emotional learning skills development. 

November and December is Self-Awareness month, and each school is participating in this initiative. We encourage families to participate as well!

Are you ready to begin? If so, take the "Try 2" Challenge, which can be found on our website. You may notice that you already use some of the easy-to-implement strategies at home! If you have a strategy that works for you or general feedback, you can share it by using the Focus of the Month Feedback Form.

The SEL website will continue to develop as we progress through each month. Also, please be on the lookout for SEL news and information in your school newsletter!"

Shared via

New SEL web page

More about CASEL at

Franklin Public Schools: Social-Emotional Learning (SEL) “Focus of the Month”
Franklin Public Schools: Social-Emotional Learning (SEL) “Focus of the Month”

Monday, June 17, 2019

Franklin School Committee recap - June 11, 2019

The School Committee meeting of Tuesday, June 11, can be summarized as follows:

The Superintendent's Report can be found online


FEF Presentation

SEPAC Presentation

Student Services Tiered Focus

Student Services SEL Improvements Preliminary Report

Additional details can be found in my notes reported live during the meeting:

FEF meeting schedule for the coming school year 2019-2020
FEF meeting schedule for the coming school year 2019-2020

Sunday, April 14, 2019

School Committee Recap - $2.3M in school budget cuts outlined, School Start timeline to change

I was in Toronto on a business trip this week and unable to full participate in the School Committee meeting. I did manage to tap into the web cast after the school budget discussion and near the beginning of the School Start Times discussion.

While the cable broadcast did cut out at 10:00 PM, the webcast did not. I did tune out at the end of the start times discussion approx 10:15 PM and miss the remaining of the meeting agenda. We'll all need to catch up to the Franklin TV rebroadcast when it is available.

Highlight: School Budget
Programs and positions amounting to $2.3 million were found to reduce the budget deficit. The details are listed in the links below. 

The budget is scheduled for vote by the School Committee at their Apr 23 meeting. The school budget is scheduled for review and discussion at the Finance Committee meeting Apr 25. The Finance Committee is also scheduled for a vote that night on the full Franklin budget to send to the Town Council.  

The Town Council has their two budget hearings scheduled for May 22 and 23. The Council meeting of May 8 is scheduled to be a discussion and update from our State legislation delegation (Representative Roy and Senators Rausch and Spilka).

Time is getting short for scheduling an override vote to occur before the July 1 FY 2020 budget year begins. Without an override vote scheduled, this means the school budget will need to absorb the $2.3 million identified (or something similar that amounts to the same total). It also means that the school budget which was originally proposed to meet critical needs (and acknowledged to not meet them all) will certainly increase the critical needs NOT being meet for our future generation.

Highlight: School Start Times
A number of folks stepped forward to comment for and against the school start time proposal. It was good to see so many showing up in person. Where were you all the past year? I hope you show as much engagement around the school budget (no matter what side you choose).

The Superintendent's proposal to formally close the Advisory Committee (a normal and expected action) along with the proposal to continue to work on the details for implementation is expected to be voted on at the Apr 23 meeting. The vote on a school start times proposal itself would not be until sometime later this year at the earliest. 

School budget page

Budget memo

$2.3M budget cuts outlined

Other documents for the Apr 9 meeting packet can be found online

School Committee Recap - $2.3M in school budget cuts outlined, School Start timeline to change
School Committee Recap - $2.3M in school budget cuts
outlined, School Start timeline to change

Saturday, January 12, 2019

January 8 - Social Emotional Learning Forum a Success!

Social Emotional Learning Forum A Success!
The Social Emotional Learning Alliance for Massachusetts and I are incredibly proud to have brought together over 200 teachers, students and engaged residents at the Social Emotional Learning Forum on Tuesday, January 8, to learn more about the importance of social emotional learning for our children.

We heard from a diverse panel of SEL experts, including Framingham School Committee Member Beverly Hugo, Director of Counseling and Social Emotional Learning at Ashland Public Schools Jennifer Cutler, Principal of Miller Elementary School in Holliston David Keim, and Parent Liaison, Natick Special Education Parent Advisory Council (SEPAC) Elise Gorseth.

As Senate President, I am committed to improving education and advocating for mental health parity for residents across the Commonwealth. SEL is a critical 21st-century skill to foster resilient, empathetic, and workforce-ready graduates.

Event materials and resources on SEL can be found online.

The forum is part of my MetroWest Kids Initiative, designed to identify strategies to help children in MetroWest learn, grow and succeed, with a focus on social emotional learning. SEL is a research-backed framework to bring skills like stress management, positive relationship-building, responsible decision-making, and empathy into classrooms and throughout the community.

Thank you again for demonstrating a commitment to social emotional learning in classrooms throughout the Commonwealth. We look forward to seeing you at our next forum!

Office of Senate President Karen E. Spilka | 617-722-1500 |

Office of Senate President Karen E. Spilka 
Massachusetts State House, Room 332, Boston, MA 02133

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Thursday, January 10, 2019

In the News: home heating assistance sought; "the multi-pronged process that is social emotional leaning"

From the Milford Daily News, articles of interest for Franklin:

"Human service activists and lawmakers rallied Wednesday outside the Statehouse, calling for the state to help offset a cut in federal funding by allocating $30 million to help low-income families afford winter home heating bills. 
Most of the 48,000 households in Massachusetts that heat with oil have used up their benefits or will do so by the end of January, according to the Massachusetts Association for Community Action, which said 160,000 households in Massachusetts are served under the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program. 
Funding for the federal program was reduced by $11 million this year, and has over several years been cut from $200 million a year to $136 million per year, MASSCAP said."

Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

Keep Warm in Massachusetts: Need help paying your heating bills?
Keep Warm in Massachusetts: Need help paying your heating bills?

"For Beverly Hugo, teaching works best when educators focus on a student’s overall well-being, the key element to what academics call social-emotional learning. 
“We are trying to put child development back into the curriculum and less emphasis on testing - especially in K-12” Hugo said. “We use positive behavioral intervention and support.” 
Hugo, president of Massachusetts Association of School Committees, was one four panelists invited to speak Tuesday night at Senate President Karen Spilka’s forum on social-emotional learning, sponsored by Framingham State University. 
“We agree that we need to teach and support the whole child,” Spilka said in her opening remarks. “Tonight, we are focusing on successful implementation strategies for SEL (social- emotional learning) in our schools and our communities.”

Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

Social and emotional learning (SEL)
Social and emotional learning (SEL)

Sunday, December 9, 2018

Save the Date: January 8 - Social Emotional Learning Forum


Please join me and the Social Emotional Alliance for Massachusetts ( for a Social Emotional Learning Forum on Tuesday, January 8 from 6:00-7:00 PM at the Warren Conference Center and Inn at the Hayden Lodge located at 529 Chestnut Street, Ashland 01721. Registration begins at 5:30 PM.
The forum is part of my MetroWest Kids Initiative to promote the benefits of social emotional learning and examine opportunities for effective implementation in schools throughout Massachusetts. As Senate President, I pledge to remain dedicated to helping schools create a positive climate, while fostering the development of social and emotional skills for adults and students.  

Use #MetroWestKids to promote the event on social media and share this event widely with your network! I will keep you informed as the event approaches, and appreciate you saving the date for this informative discussion!

If you have any other concerns or comments, please do not hesitate to call my office at (617) 722-1500 or email Puja Mehta at

Warm Regards,
Senate President Karen E. Spilka
2nd Middlesex and Norfolk

  Link to RSVP

Office of Senate President Karen E. Spilka | Massachusetts State House, Room 332, Boston, MA 02133

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