(Updated) Supporting Our Schools During The COVID-19 Crisis: SSWNetwork Forum Resources
Editor’s Note: In response to the rapidly-changing COVID-19 situation and questions from our SSWNetwork members, we are sharing some resources here, first two FAQ documents from the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) and the second, a transcript of our 3/14 LiveChat where we discussed our responses to the COVID-19 crisis in our states and school districts, and shared strategies for how to turn the school shut-downs happening in our districts into an opportunity to promote wellness and SEL for our students, staff colleagues, and ourselves. A big thank you to SSWNetwork member and expert SSW consultant Steven Whitmore @OaklandSSW for sharing these varied links, strategies, and DOE resources with us on SSWNetwork. We are actively looking for more ideas and strategies for how individual school clinicians are planning to stay connected to their schools and student clients during the crisis. If you are interested in sharing what you’re doing and/or writing about it for SSWN, e-mail me at [email protected] or DM us (Managing Editor Sean Delaney, SSWN co-editor Scott Carchedi, or myself) @SchoolSocWork. You can also join us on SSWNetwork at this link. with a new group we’ve formed there, “School Clinicians Responding to the COVID-19 Crisis” Take care.
Coronavirus Information, Resources & Considerations For Services During School Shutdown (Compiled by Steven Whitmore, School Social Worker, & Oakland Schools Consultant)
U.S. DOE & CDC Resources On How Schools Are Responding
“Questions and Answers On Providing Services To Children With Disabilities During The Coronavirus Disease Outbreak March 2020”qa-covid-19-03-12-2020
“FERPA & Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Frequently Asked Questions”FERPA-and-Coronavirus-Frequently-Asked-Questions
Tier 1 & SEL For Our Schools During The COVID-19 Crisis: SSWNetwork Live Chat Transcript
Thanks to school psychologist and Loyola SMHAPP student Dorey Delikowski for co-hosting this chat–lots of great stuff here as we all grapple with this evolving situation.
SATURDAY, MARCH 14
Michael Kelly Ok, let’s get started. Welcome everyone to the Saturday LiveChat here at SSWNetwork!
Michael Kelly I’m Prof. Michael Kelly and today we’re going to be delving into an important and given our current global crisis around the C-virus and schools closing on a temporary basis, super-relevant: building the SEL of all of us and our teaching colleagues to effectively do Tier 1 work.
Michael Kelly I’m thrilled to have Ms. Dorey Delikowski, School Psych and Loyola SMHAPP student with us to share the work she’s doing in this area and the resources she’s gathered. Welcome Dorey!
Dorey Delikowski Thank you Dr. Kelly, I’m looking forward to connecting with you all this next hour on this topic!
Michael Kelly Let’s get started with introductions from who’s online (sometimes there are people listed on the chat but they’re not officially “here,” just doing stuff on the larger site–if you can say your name, where you practice, and what interested you about this topic.
Penny Williams-Wolford Hi Dorey, Thank you for today’s Live Chat!
Dorey Delikowski Hi, I’m Dorey Delikowski. I’m a school psychologist in central WI which is a small rural area. I work in a district of about 500 students 4K-12th grade.
Dorey Delikowski Hi Penny – nice to “see” you again! We met this summer
Penny Williams-Wolford Hi, My name is Penny Williams-Wolford, I am a School Social Worker in the western suburbs of Chicago, and Tier 1 work was critical this week. Helping students feel safe and calm was very important.
Penny Williams-Wolford Dorey, I hope to see you this summer at the Institute again. ?
Dorey Delikowski Penny, hoping I can make it!
Beth Frank-Heath Beth here. New SSW in Warren MI. Started Monday then “boom” closed for four weeks. I hope to volunteer for my District delivering food home visits to need families whatever is needed.
Michael Kelly Speaking of our own SEL and self-care, let’s start things with talking about the past week, given all the things happening in the country and world around the virus. I also know that we have a lot of us now heading into some temporary school closure times as well. So to start our conversations–what did you see and learn about your own teacher colleagues/school district related to their SEL needs in the wake of this crisis?
Dorey Delikowski Hi Beth – interesting way to start your career! Nice to have you here
Penny Williams-Wolford Wow, Beth, we are closed for two weeks. Technically, it’s one the next week is spring break. What a way to dive into real social work…I am glad you are there to assist families.
Michael Kelly Yes welcome again Beth to the group!
Michael Kelly So what did you all see/learn about your staff this past week?
Beth Frank-Heath I believe I have a great support team. Lots of green teachers and we’re in a high risk area. The school is where I worked in CPS for many years, so I aware of family needs.
Michael Kelly And I see we have Bev and Tina on with us now, if you want to say hello and tell us what interested you about joining us today? Welcome to you both.
Dorey Delikowski Our small district was working on preparing for this throughout the week. A team of us started meeting early in the week to discuss steps for keeping our kids connected if we went to closure. We had a diverse group of people on the team- teachers, support folks, tech folks, admin. I think we got the nuts and bolts down pretty well and we also provided information to families throughout the week and kept communication going so no one felt blindsided
Dorey Delikowski Our students had all sorts of reactions and I think we helped our teachers with the topic so they could be informed enough to ease the anxiety of the students. However we still had some students feeling a large range of emotions – including my own daughter and her friends
Beth Frank-Heath Admin seems very concerned up IEP compliance. Which I agree, is important but so is basic supportive services.
Dorey Delikowski She is in HS and worried about keeping up with every thing
Penny Williams-Wolford Dr. Kelly, I noticed most of the staff used humor to cope with the stress they were experiencing. I delivered visuals to staff to share with students. One visual of a super kid with a cape on. The other visual of a person coughing and dots of germs flying out of his mouth. The other was of an emoji covering his cough. I asked them to share with their students in a small/whole group with their class on how they can be a superhero. I will try to post the link to the visuals shortly.
Michael Kelly That’s awesome Dorey–one thing that I think we’re going to be figuring out this next week is how we do the SpEd and other education services + crisis stuff for kids in this time.
Dorey Delikowski In WI we are not held to IEP minutes but we do need to worry about regression.
Dorey Delikowski Our sped teachers are also providing learning opportunities for their students that they teach directly. Lots of check ins by phone, google meet ups, gathering activities for them to work on.
Michael Kelly You mentioned your own daughter Dorey–I think what I’m still trying to sort out is how do we both attend to the anxiety/fear that this is causing our youth (and us) and also do the work of SEL promotion too (love your examples, Penny!)
Dorey Delikowski To be real – we are all experiencing some level of discord, unrest and anxiety right? So, how do we support others and pay attention to OUR own reactions?
Dorey Delikowski That is the plan- we will see how it all works out!
As a school psychologist and a 2nd year student in the School Mental Health Advanced Practice Program at Loyola, I am in the midst of a school change project in my small rural school district.
Penny Williams-Wolford Dorey, my grandson (7 years old) was feeling the impact. He whispered to me and asked me not to tell his mother he heard her listening to something about the C-virus.
Dorey Delikowski NPR put out a great little video that explains the virus that I sent to staff to share and a few of my teachers said they used it in class
Beth Frank-Heath We closed without preparing students. I’m also worried about their ability to cope. Right now, only family contact is through Superintendant. I wish we could have some sort of messaging on SEL. I text my principal and am waiting to hear back.
Dorey Delikowski To be real – we are all experiencing some level of discord, unrest and anxiety right? So, how do we support others and pay attention to OUR own reactions?
Michael Kelly I just posted the article that I worked up with Dorey’s help to kick off this week over at SSWN–Dorey do you want to tell us a bit about your process in picking the material in the article, and then maybe we can talk about the SEL tool you posted and the answers you got about professional development for teachers?
Dorey Delikowski Sure!
Beth Frank-Heath. Yes Dorey!
Michael Kelly Ok, so tell us a bit about your interest in the topic and what you started learning from the larger SSWNetwork this week too when you posted–there was a lot of great stuff in a few threads I saw.
Penny Williams-Wolford Beth, I am glad I have access to some of my parents through our school’s app. Unfortunately, not all families are connected to it. Most of my students who have IEPs are.
Dorey Delikowski The article I picked is dated but I felt it had some really important information in regards to adult/teacher social and emotional competence. This is a key component of implementing SEL school wide and I think if don’t pay attention to our own well being it’s not going to transfer to our students. This article talks explicitly about the components of this and ways to increase adult/teacher SEL
Bev Wilks Students started their Spring Break yesterday and they were notified while on their break.
There are still a lot of uncertainties.
The authors propose a model of the prosocial classroom that highlights the importance of teachers’ social and emotional competence (SEC) and well-being in the development and maintenance of supportive teacher-student relationships, effective classroom management, and successful social and emotional learning program implementation.
Dorey Delikowski I was very excited to see so many responses to the question posted this week as well
Michael Kelly Me too–talk about that a bit more.
Michael Kelly “Does your district provide professional development for staff that emphasizes learning & modeling ADULT social/emotional competence?” is the question Dorey asked our network by the way…
Dorey Delikowski There were a lot of great thoughts put out there – quarterly PLCs, mindfulness training for teachers – specifically the Coalition of Schools Educating Mindfully -, One person talked about a wellness day that the district does that focuses on building CASEL competencies- I loved that idea!There were a lot of great thoughts put out there – quarterly PLCs, mindfulness training for teachers – specifically the Coalition of Schools Educating Mindfully -, One person talked about a wellness day that the district does that focuses on building CASEL competencies- I loved that idea!
Dorey Delikowski There were also folks who said their district doesn’t do anything in this area and one person said they were not to broach SEL at board meeting – frustrating!
Penny Williams-Wolford Link to visuals for reducing the spread of germs https://www.woodburnpress.com/free-printables.html
Michael Kelly Yeah, that one about “do not speak of SEL” was really something, right?
Bev Wilks Can you also share information on how to use SEL as we move to teach online?
Michael Kelly I too was encouraged by the creative ways people were doing it in person, but to Bev’s question, how can we make this work happen online over the next few weeks/maybe longer, for our students and our staff colleagues?
Michael Kelly Thanks Penny for that resource on germs ?
Dorey Delikowski My district is working on implementing tier I SEL at the elementary level and we have done a lot of work to get this moving through on going training but as I continue on this journey with my district I am really thinking we need to move our training in the direction of ADULT SEL and build our own skills and competencies as well as incorporate self-care. That will be my next inquiry with our team I think. But, who knows what will happen now
Michael Kelly I hear you Dorey–the way that this virus is disrupting normal activity everywhere is both a crisis and an opportunity to me–in some ways it’s a chance to make the emphasis on connection and caring for each other even more prominent in our schools, and we’re right there as school clinicians as people who know how to make that happen.
Beth Frank-Heath YES Dr Kelly!!!!
Penny Williams-Wolford Dorey, that is interesting they do not want SEL discussed at a board meeting. This article speaks about how Boards embedded SEL into policy to ensure systemic change regardless of who was the superintendent. See like below:When-Districts-Support-SEL-Brief.pdf
Dorey Delikowski The CASEL self-reflection took is a great resource for getting people to start thinking about their own skills. This could be something I ask people to do while at home and spend some time thinking about this. I was supposed to run a book club for PD this coming week for staff and my book is called “Promoting social and emotional learning in schools ‘ guidlines for educators”. It’s an older publication but still very practical and relevant
Dorey Delikowski Thanks Penny – I know! I can’t remember who shared that but this might be helpful for them as well
Michael Kelly So I think the questions I’m thinking about are how can the online resources we’ve built (here on SSWNetwork, on our news/blog SSWN and even the SMHAPP certificate) be mobilized to provide some additional support to people wanting to do this work remotely–I’m very open to hearing from all of you on ways you think that this could be build up and amplified in the coming months.
Dorey Delikowski I am going to be reading what you just sent Penny
Penny Williams-Wolford Just one more thing I want to mention about SEL and the article I posted in relation to this topic it stated to make sure SEL is included in all PDs. This is one way to create school-wide change.
Michael Kelly yes, Penny bringing the great resources and ideas (as always!) ?
Dorey Delikowski Yes Penny – integrate it! We should do that for adult training, we ask teachers to do that all the time
Michael Kelly I love that comment Penny–it made me think of the SEL self-awareness tool from CASEL that we shared on the network this week.CASEL_Tool_for_Personal-Assessment-and-Reflection_2.pdf
Penny Williams-Wolford Dr. Kelly, I agree. This is definitely a time when the SSW should be visual and their input is valuable too.
Dorey Delikowski This is the tool I mentioned above and something that staff could do at home in the next couple of weeks. Lots of time to reflect!
Beth Frank-Heath My creative juices are flowing but because I’m so new in this position things I share here or suggest may be redundant? Should I still share to the SSWNETWORK anyhow?
Michael Kelly Yes, I wonder about trying to do some “virtual PD” for faculty Dorey, very cool idea.
Dorey Delikowski Yes Beth – share!
Beth Frank-Heath just upload the tool. Thanks!
Penny Williams-Wolford To answer the question about how the work can be done remotely that have started a Google doc and SW are adding resources into the Google doc. I think that is a great way to assist each other and our families/communities, etc.
Michael Kelly Beth, first off, share away. 2nd, meeting you on here last week, you have a ton of practice wisdom from previous positions, and if anything, school mental health needs more folks coming in from other positions to help us keep us fresh and on point.
Dorey Delikowski This is an opportunity to do some remote training on wellness and then ask staff to create a wellness plan – This would take some planning of course to make sure things are still done with a level of fidelity and with some expectations. It will be interesting to see how “connected” people will want to be during this time.
Michael Kelly That whole business about building Google Docs (I know a few other members of our network Penny are also working on that–wondering if we might try to do some gathering of templates that people are using? For example, our friend from the 3rd SMHAPP cohort Krista Sodt posted one…)
Dorey Delikowski Beth or Penny, do either of your schools do anything with teacher self care or mindfulness?
Penny Williams-Wolford Dr. Kelly, thank you for adding that. I did not see that on the site this week. I appreciate you Dr. Kelly. This is one of the reasons why I have included time for these weekly Live Chats. They offer opportunities to meet new, so much researched-based information and opportunities to learn more about the research from our colleagues in the field. I love it!!!!!
Michael Kelly that’s a crucial point to me Dorey–for some people, this crisis and shut-down is a chance to “get away” from the school etc. but for a lot of us (and lots of our neediest kids and families) it’s the opposite–the risks to their being isolated and feeling disconnected are real and school clinicians will need to figure out how they challenge their schools to address this as the crisis stretches on…
Penny Williams-Wolford Dr. Kelly, It would be great if we could combine them…so we are not duplicating efforts.
Michael Kelly I agree Penny–let me think on this some more and stay tuned.
Beth Frank-Heath I’ve got extra time….to help. ?
Dorey Delikowski This time of year most folks are feeling burned out and this forced break can be helpful in that respect but this will be a balancing act
Beth Frank-Heath I agree!
Michael Kelly I was thinking the same Dorey–it’s a “pause” of sorts right?
Dorey Delikowski The article talks about burnout and this is one main reason I wanted to talk about this topic. If this crisis were not happening we would be talking about ways to help our teachers make it through. It’s such a real thingAND, how do WE as support folks continue to assist?
Penny Williams-Wolford Dorey, Currently, we do not, but my project is around attendance and I think it is going to lead me into that. I also wanted to do something next year about including self-care into our weekly PLC at least bi-monthly. I wanted to have a conversation with my principal on how we can do this. She is such an awesome leader…did I say she is awesome…she is awesome and open to doing whatever is necessary to support teachers, any member of her staff and definitely students and their families.
Beth Frank-Heath We have a staff FB page and I thought about reaching out that way to let them know I’m here for them as well. Maybe share through that format until we can be in person again.
Dorey Delikowski We had a lot of staff members that had significant things happen to them this year and it has impacted their mental health and the overall climate of our building
Michael Kelly These are great ideas everyone (and remember, we’re saving these LiveChats and eventually publishing them) will also help us reach out and mobilize people, too over the next month.
Dorey Delikowski As a small school and community, a death or two or three can have a ripple effect because people are connected in so many ways. This was one reason that I started moving my thoughts from student SEL to teacher/adult SEL and wellness
Penny Williams-Wolford Dorey, Friday when I felt it was going to happen I immediately looked at my calendar and prepared to work from home. I want to be prepared to support students/families and staff. Also, I want to do all I can so IEP meetings do not get delayed.
Dorey Delikowski amI have 4 IEP meetings scheduled next week….. We may try to do these through google meet or a conference call. I do not want to get so behind on this. I serve as the LEA on all IEPs
Penny Williams-Wolford Beth, great idea to reach out on the FB page. Perhaps you can post ways to engage in self-care during this time too.
Dorey Delikowski One way I am going to keep things positive in my own home during the week is to build a schedule for our days – outside time, academic time, exercise time, reading time. Limiting teenagers from to much screen time is my goal. We live in the country so we can spend a lot of time outside walking, playing etc
Penny Williams-Wolford Dorey, I am sorry to hear members of the staff are living through some difficult times…I am glad you are there to be a resource for staff too.
Michael Kelly That idea of structuring time both at home and overall is really important Dorey–I’m going to be doing the same over here too.
Dorey Delikowski Thanks Penny
Dorey Delikowski That would be a great suggestion for staff and families! Creating an example of that and putting it on school FB page. I think I will suggest that to my admin
Dorey Delikowski Although other families do not have the luxury we have of being home. Being home is also going to cause disruption and stress on a family that needs childcare etc
Bev Wilks I’m going to use this time to catch up on a few SSW articles. I will follow up with my district to see how best our at risk population can still receive SSW services during this time.
Dorey Delikowski Great Bev! Please share more on what your doing as you learn
Penny Williams-Wolford Dorey, Thank you for sharing how you will create balance. I will definitely mention that to my daughter. My grandson’s school gave them e-learning activities. Last time they had e-learning days it literally took most of the day. They asked them to post to their online app documentation when they were doing the various activities especially videos of their PE activities. It appeared the children and parents loved the PE posting…my daughter was sort of overwhelmed with monitoring all of it because it took longer than she thought. She was working from home so it was challenging for her to juggle it all.
Michael Kelly So I think we’re getting close to winding down–Dorey do you have any final thoughts (it’s been a really awesome chat packed with lots of good stuff!)
Dorey Delikowski Yes, although my 15 year old daughter was initially stressed, she is relaxing now. My 13 year old son however woke up this morning and immediately went to his chromebook to see if he had any emails yet from teachers. I think he is kind of excited to try it
Bev Wilks Dorey, I will plan to share. We probably need to have a follow up to this. Thanks Michael for sharing, I will check it out.
Dorey Delikowski Thank you ALL for spending this hour talking. It went SO fast! I wish you all the best in the weeks to come. I appreciate all the ideas and resources shared today and I hope we can all find a way to stay connected to our students, staff and teachers that is meaningful
Penny Williams-Wolford Dorey, thank you for this Live Chat.
Dorey Delikowski Penny, I really enjoyed it
Michael Kelly So as we end our hour, just a preview that we will be having a break from LiveChats next week, but be back with LiveChats through early May, every Saturday 9-10 a.m. Bookmark and tell your friends!
Bev Wilks This was very informative. Thanks
Penny Williams-Wolford Professor Kelly, I appreciate all you are doing to advance SSWers! Thank you!
Penny Williams-Wolford Bye Beth, I hope to see you next week
Dorey Delikowski Now more than ever these live chats can be a way for us to keep these ideas moving along
Penny Williams-Wolford Bev, I agree!
Beth Frank-Heath My principal just messaged me. She will review any supports I share with her. ??????
Thank you for all you do Dr. Kelly and team.
Michael Kelly Dorey, thank you so much for your practice wisdom and leadership. And one more commercial, our summer institute registration is now LIVE on our events page (July 16th-17th) in downtown Chicago. It’s our 15th annual one, and it’s going to be awesome.
Dorey Delikowski Thank you Dr. Kelly for setting up this opportunity and giving us this forum.
Penny Williams-Wolford Congratulations Beth!!! It sounds like you are visible and a valuable SSW in your District!!!!
Dorey Delikowski I hope to be there…. Summer plans are still in the worksI hope you all have a wonderful Saturday!
Michael Kelly Thanks you too Dorey and take care everybody–more to come.
Dorey Delikowski Bye all
Penny Williams-Wolford Professor Kelly, I think the 15th Annual Institute will be another year of SW PD awesomeness!
Penny Williams-Wolford Bye, everyone! Be safe and take care of yourself!