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NC Public Radio: Kids come to school with trauma; it affects their learning and behavior

Mar 4, 2018, North Carolina Public Radio: When Kids Come To School With Trauma, These NC Teachers Try And Listen http://wunc.org/post/when-kids-come-school-trauma-these-nc-teachers-try-and-listen#stream/0 … Trauma and stress from things like hunger and housing instability have been scientifically shown to derail brain development. At the least, it distracts kids from learning. … After some digging, staff discovered this behavior was a result of the student’s home life. “Seeing it through that lens of trauma, we understand that it’s not just that this student doesn’t want to perform right,” Bullock said. “It’s not that she doesn’t want to do right. She has a context and a background that has, kind of, put her in a place where she’s fighting.” … Taking the time to understand that context requires a mindset shift on the part of teachers. That's where the Public School Forum of North Carolina, an advocacy organization, has stepped in. This year it started the NC Resilience and Learning Project, through which it is helping Pattillo and two other schools in Edgecombe County and one in Rowan County to better support students who have experienced trauma. Through this grant-funded project, Pattillo staff received training on the effects of trauma on kids before the school year started. Bullock said that left a mark. … “The biggest challenge is just time,” said Elizabeth DeKonty, a fellow with the Resilience and Learning Project. “Time for teachers, knowing that they’re already spread incredibly thin. Knowing that for administrators, there’s already tons of demands on them and requirements that they have and things that they have to do. And so [we’re] really kind of framing this as that culture shift, and not another to do item.” …