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Building Trauma-Sensitive Schools

Building Trauma-Sensitive Schools
Jen Alexander MA, NCC, SB-RPT
Year published:
Brookes Publishing Co.
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Member Price:
$27.95 (6% off)
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In the U.S., at least one in four youth experiences trauma severe enough to negatively affect their school success. You can give hope and help to these students with this reader-friendly how-to guide — your springboard for building responsive, trauma-sensitive pre-K–12 schools.

Drawing on her extensive experience as a school counselor, trainer, and mother, trauma expert Jen Alexander delivers a comprehensive framework for building a safe, supportive school environment that helps all students learn and thrive.

You’ll start with an evidence-based introduction to the profound impact of trauma on a child’s development, attachment, and behavior. Then, you’ll get an effective multi-tier system of support (MTSS) for developing a trauma-sensitive learning environment, including both universal strategies (Tier 1) and more intensive interventions (Tier 2 and Tier 3). Compelling anecdotes and sample scripts illuminate challenges and solutions, and the included forms and worksheets are valuable tools for helping educators build the mindset and skills necessary for becoming trauma-sensitive. With this engaging, highly practical guide about what works and why, your school team will gain insights and develop action plans that make a real difference in the lives of all kids, including the most vulnerable.


  • Make five key shifts in the way you view and approach students, so that you’re better equipped to support them
  • Work together to prioritize resilience by actively putting relationships first in your school
  • Implement universal instructional strategies that foster safety, connection, regulation, and learning for all students
  • Use special supports, supplemental instruction, and coaching when universal strategies aren’t enough
  • Collaborate effectively with families and colleagues to meet each student’s needs
  • Incorporate restorative discipline practices that focus on restitution, not retribution
  • Create a personalized self-care plan to promote wellness and reduce the effects of job-related stress

PRACTICAL MATERIALS: Creative activities for teachers, powerful case stories, sample dialogues and scripts for educators and counselors, reflection and brainstorming worksheets, downloadable forms, and templates and handouts for use with students.

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