In Philadelphia, the closest metropolis to Lakeside, there are at least 60,000 trauma-impacted students who attend school every day. Their stories and statistics are alarming. It is no wonder it is almost impossible to produce good test scores, prevent violence and reduce school drop-out rates.
The challenge of trauma’s impact for students
Trauma-impacted students can struggle to focus, have resilience, make good decisions and be able to perform at a normal level. Their brains can be so dysregulated they also cannot function well in a social context.
The following article by Joel Mathis, Philadelphia Magazine, provides some insight into what Philadelphia School District students and staff are struggling with every day. I think it provides a realistic perspective. The trauma-informed classes mentioned in the article are provided by Lakeside’s Institute for Professional Development. We are very privileged to work with United Way and Philadelphia School District as be a resource to them for issues like trauma.
It is our hope that we will see some significant changes in how teachers will be dealing with trauma-impacted students and their families in years to come. We are beginning a process we hope will radically change the environment in classrooms and schools, and with relationships with the students in the Philadelphia School District.
We feel privileged to be a part of such a progressive model of trauma-informed care.
Gerry Vassar, President/CEO, Lakeside Educational Network