Continuous Improvement Connection: School Climate
This tool shows how the continuous improvement template can be used to create a plan for improving relationships among teachers at different grade levels as part of Focus Area 3.
A safe and supportive school climate is an important factor for improving academic, behavioral, and mental health outcomes for students (Thapa, 2013). The climate of a school is considered safe and supportive when members of the school community feel socially, emotionally, and physically safe, when they feel respected and can contribute to how the school operates, and when school staff model and nurture an attitude that learning is beneficial and satisfying. States and school districts have increasingly been using school climate data to understand and support the context for learning (Cohen, 2009). Some districts use school climate surveys to measure various aspects of a schools academic and social environment, including (Thapa, 2013):
When measuring school climate, CASEL strongly advocates for the use of scientifically developed school climate surveys that have established reliability and validity. The National Center on Safe Supportive Learning Environments (NCSSLE). NCSSLE has developed a School Climate Survey Compendium to assist educators and education agencies in identifying student, staff, and family measures that have been tested for validity and reliability.
Results of a climate survey can help establish aims for continuous improvement. These data sources can help the SEL team think about strategies for promoting a safe and supportive learning climate.