The Choose Love Enrichment Program™ will be Rolled Out Across New Hampshire
The Choose Love Enrichment Program™ has been included in the first state-wide school safety plan and will be provided to schools across New Hampshire. After collaborating with Scarlett Lewis, Chief Movement Officer of the Jesse Lewis Choose Love Movement, New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu has made Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) a priority in the New Hampshire School Safety Preparedness Task Force 2018 Report.
The Choose Love Enrichment Program™ is a year-long, comprehensive pre-K through 12th grade, evidence-based SEL classroom program teaching children how to Choose Love in any circumstance and is available at no cost to educators and schools.
“This is some of our most exciting news yet! Thank you to all who collaborated on this report for being courageous leaders in the movement to Choose Love and SEL. It is a big step for our program but more importantly it is a giant step toward making our schools safer through social and emotional learning. We know that SEL = Safer Schools,” said Lewis. “External safety measures are important but they do not address the CAUSE of WHY a student would want to harm an educator or another student. Social and Emotional Learning cultivates safety from within the individual child.”
Scientific evidence shows that children who have social and emotional learning get better grades and test scores, higher attendance and graduation rates, better classroom and school climate, increased positive relationships and connections, less stress and anxiety, less behavioral issues, and less bullying. There is research now that has followed kindergartners all the way into adulthood that found kids who had social and emotional learning in school have less substance abuse, less mental illness, of all kinds, less incarceration, less violence and even less divorce rates.
“This report is the single most important document this state has ever produced surrounding school safety. Although some of the recommendations will take some time, there are several actions already underway including developing the tools our local school districts need to succeed and putting timelines in place for my commissioners to complete recommendations contained in this report,” Sununu said.
“One of the most important recommendations contained in this report is the need to expand social and emotional learning (SEL). Many schools have SEL programs in place, but these programs may not be robust enough to be effective in these challenging times. Programs have emerged that can be a tool for prevention not only for violence, but for addiction, suicide, and the toxic anxiety that has plagued our school children for too long,” Sununu continued.
“I’ve had the honor of working with Scarlett Lewis, who is the mother of Jesse Lewis, victim of the Sandy Hook elementary school shooting. She is a national leader in social emotional learning and creator of the Choose Love movement. As a state, New Hampshire will provide a backbone of support through Scarlett‘s program to introduce social emotional learning curriculum. Schools will certainly retain their autonomy to use programs that they are familiar with and have success with but we want to ensure that every student and school has the opportunity to benefit from proven SEL curriculum. Like all good programs the research can only take us so far. We need our amazing teachers and administrators to galvanize behind the concept of social emotional learning so that New Hampshire can be a leader in prevention services for our kids,” Sununu said.
New Hampshire is leading the way but it is important that all schools have a year-long, comprehensive SEL program as part of their school safety plan. Ask if your schools have a comprehensive social and emotional learning program. Social and Emotional Learning teaches students how to have healthy and positive relationships, deep and meaningful connections, skills and tools for resilience, how to identify, label, manage and express emotions in a healthy way, responsible decision making and lots more.
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