Take Rubric CTA Arrow
alt text

Focus Area 2


Create structures that foster trust and collaboration among staff.

“The power of collective capacity is that it enables ordinary people to accomplish extraordinary things—for two reasons. One is that knowledge about effective practice becomes more widely available and accessible on a daily basis. The second reason is more powerful still—working together generates commitment.”

Michael Fullan, All Systems Go: The Change Imperative for Whole System Reform

The way that staff interact and work together strongly influences school climate, and a collaborative staff community is crucial to schoolwide SEL.

When staff support and trust one another, they form a strong professional community, feel more committed to their schools, share knowledge and expertise, and work productively toward collective goals. School teams can intentionally cultivate this type of staff community by setting up structures that foster positive staff relationships and providing ongoing opportunities for staff to meaningfully collaborate.

If you have already begun developing a plan to foster staff collaboration, use the rubric or the questions below to identify areas for continuous improvement: 


Do the SEL team and school leadership intentionally foster a sense of community and shared purpose among staff?

Do the SEL team and school leadership use data on staff perceptions to improve the work climate?

Do staff have dedicated time to learn from each other, share best practices, and collaboratively problem-solve around SEL implementation challenges?

Do staff norms or shared agreements guide respectful interactions, effective collaboration, and an inclusive staff culture?

Based on your responses, you can use strategies shared in this section to help set the stage for supportive professional relationships and collaboration among staff:

  • Professional Learning Communities (PLCs)
  • Peer mentoring and Partnership
  • Integrating SEL practices into staff meetings
  • Peer consultancy protocols

The strategies provided here can be used together or as part of other models of staff collaboration and relationship-building. The SEL team can also use previously identified schoolwide SEL goals and professional learning plans to direct the work done during collaboration.

download Back to Top