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Charlotte, NC: CDC study: "childhood trauma...represents the nation's #1 health problem"

April 6, 2018, Charlotte (NC) Observer: Students need trauma-informed care http://www.charlotteobserver.com/opinion/op-ed/article208118269.html The Centers for Disease Control began a study in the mid-'90s which continues to this day called the Adverse Childhood Experiences study. The study’s lead investigator concluded that childhood trauma, stemming from experiences such as abuse, neglect, loss of a loved one and food insecurity, represents the nation’s #1 public health problem. Trauma victims who do not cope with their experiences in healthy ways increase their risk of depression, drug and alcohol addiction, domestic violence, chronic disease, mental illness and suicide. In our classrooms, the impact of trauma can range from distractibility to difficulty relating to others and managing emotions. Teachers may perceive that a student just has behavior problems or is not interested in learning, when the reality is that student is simply too overwhelmed to learn. Trauma can lead to behaviors which result in lost instructional time, reduce graduation rates and set our students on the road toward joblessness and poverty. … This movement is changing our approach to students who have experienced childhood adversity by training staff on the impact of trauma, equipping them with new strategies for helping students build resilience, and emphasizing self care for staff and students alike.