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SCL Health grants $12,000 towards social and emotional education for School District 51

Published: Jan. 25, 2021 at 6:56 PM MST
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GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KKCO) -

A unique learning program called ASSET made its way to School District 51 during a time filled with so many challenges. “[It’s] a social and emotional learning curriculum, designed to help students reduce stress and build resilience for future success,” say founder and executive director, Tessa Zimmerman.

SCL Health granted the ASSET program $12,000 to go towards training for School District 51 educators. The program consists of mindfulness, positive psychology and positive self-talk.

“So as an interventionist here at Central, I teach kids who either struggle with school or are struggling in life and need a little bit more one-on-one attention,” says District 51 social and emotional learning specialist, Heather O’brien.

“If we just teach reading, writing arithmetic, we’re not completely preparing the whole child for life, things like how to regulate your emotions, how to have empathy for other people, how to get along with other people,” O’Brien explains.

Some of the program’s studies show about 90% of students use their stress-reducing tools after they’ve learned them in the classroom.

“I’ve had some kids who have said things like, you know at lunch they got really mad at someone and instead of hauling off and punching them, they took a deep breath and realized they had a different choice that they could make,” says O’Brien.

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