PAUSD is rolling out SchoolConnect, a new Social Emotional Learning curriculum, this school year after recommendations from the Social Emotional Learning Committee.
According to former committee member and Wellness Teacher on Special Assignment Joshua Bloom, SchoolConnect teaches the skills necessary to succeed in college and beyond, including how to communicate and listen.
“Social Emotional learning is really all about helping people develop the awareness, the skills, and the habits necessary to live a healthy, responsible life,” Bloom said.
“Social Emotional learning is really all about helping people develop the awareness, the skills, and the habits necessary to live a healthy, responsible life.”
– Wellness Teacher Joshua Bloom
According to former Paly student and committee member Anmol Nagar, the district implemented SEL in an attempt to align district-wide mental health initiatives.
“Although many amazing things were going on at various school sites, there was no overarching theme to align these separate efforts,” she said.
Freshman Jonathan Sheh, a student whose advisory included the SEL curriculum, doesn’t think the program has accomplished much.
“Sure, we should have an introduction to these topics, but the way they teach them isn’t really helpful,” he said.
Other students believe the plan has merit, but the implementation can be improved.
“I don’t think it’s been integrated into the classroom enough to achieve what it is supposed to achieve,” said senior Tilak Misner. “The point of it is to integrate [Social Emotional Learning] into academic learning, but it is still very separate from the rest of the school day.”