January is a good month to reflect on your school’s transformation to practicing trauma-informed, trauma-sensitive strategies. Use this multi-tiered checklist to evaluate your progress and plan next steps. This checklist compliments the book, Building Resilience in Students Impacted by Adverse Childhood Experiences.

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Building Resilience: School Self-Assessment   

 N=Not Implemented P=Partially Implemented F=Fully Implemented or Due Date        



















Tier 1

Resilient Students                          

____Clearly communicated and consistent routines and expectations both in individual classrooms and school-wide

____School staff have received professional development on the prevalence and impact of ACEs & trauma

____Staff are intentional in building and maintaining relationships with all students

____Students understand “Brain in the Hand” or an equivalent means to communicate their emotions and state of arousal

____Educators view behavior as a form of communication & implement strategies to foster students’ sense of safety, belonging, & feeling valued

____Students have routines and spaces for regulation in every class (Go Noodle, calm down corners, mindful minutes, etc.)

____Class meetings, circles, or check-ins occur at least once a week in each class

____Students have meaningful opportunities to contribute to the school community (class jobs, leadership opportunities, etc.)

____Social-emotional learning is taught by the classroom teacher and integrated into instruction and classroom management

____Behavioral issues are responded to with Restorative Practices

____If students are removed from class due to a behavioral issue they engage in a “Ready to Learn” process

____Students see their cultures and identities positively represented in the curriculum & school environment

____School clubs and extracurriculars affirm students in their cultures and identities

____Teachers have a “Growth Mindset” and encourage learning and effort

Resilient Educators

____Staff circles occur at least once a month

____Schoolwide practices foster self-care, community, collective problem-solving, sense of purpose, & social-emotional well-being among staff

____Educators have identified in-the-moment strategies to self-regulate and are supported by building-wide practices such as Tap-in/Tap-out

____Teachers have time and support during PLC’s, or common planning, to develop social-emotional and/or behavioral interventions

Resilient Families & Communities

____Families receive regular strengths-based communication about their student(s)

____Partnerships with community organizations address students’ and families’ fundamental needs (ex: “food to go” programs, etc.)

____Families are informed of the supports and services available to them in a language that they understand

____School addresses barriers to family engagement: childcare, transportation, trust, welcoming environment, language/translation, etc.





Tier 2


____Tier 2 students participate in a mentoring program or Check-in/Check-out

____Social-emotional small groups (typically 4-6 weeks) help students build relationships, regulation skills, communication, & problem-solving

____Families are engaged through a variety of means including home visits, restorative circles, etc.

____Electives are offered that embed social-emotional learning within content (ex: a CTE course includes a lesson on nonviolent communication)

____School leaders identify groups of students who need additional, focused support

____Community organizations provide students with culturally responsive opportunities for support and/or enrichment





Tier 3


____Tier 3 intervention plans are strength-based, relationship-oriented, and provide support to both the student and teacher(s)

____Tier 3 students receive tailored supports that may include an alternative schedule, regulation breaks, one-on-one counseling, etc.

____Behavior scripts, escalation maps, and/or safety plans disseminated to staff to support students with severe behavioral escalations

____Wraparound services are provided to students and families in partnership with community organizations and mental health professionals

____Regular communication with families seeks to: foster trust; connect them with resources; and provide support


Foundational Structures:

____Data reflects academics, behavior, attendance, and culture/climate

____Leadership team prioritizes and implements schoolwide practices that foster educator and student resilience

____A screening and referral process is used to identify students who need additional social-emotional and/or behavioral support

____A Tier 1 Team uses data to develop and implement schoolwide social-emotional & behavioral supports

____A Tier 3 team develops and implements interventions for Tier 3 students