Giving Compass' Take:

· Writing for District Administration, Victoria Clayton explains how a school district in Massachusetts is using the Devereux Students Strengths Assessment to measure students' social and emotional learning competencies.

· How does SEL help students develop the skills they need to succeed in the future? What is the best way school scan incorporate SEL into the curriculum?

· Read more about social-emotional learning and how it affects students

Their surroundings may be idyllic, but educators in one Cape Cod district found themselves confronting the struggles experienced by systems across the nation. Barnstable Public Schools (5,300 students) had over several years seen an uptick in at-risk students and children with complex needs.

This, along with promising research from organizations such as the Collaborative for Academic, Social and Emotional Learning, propelled the Massachusetts district—like so many others—to adopt a full-throttle social-emotional learning initiative.

But how can districts measure progress when the results can be far less black and white than the outcome of a math test? Enter SEL assessments, which, though varied and evolving, are providing educators with actionable insight into the impact of their efforts.

“We knew we wanted a strength-based assessment—something that would tell us what students do well and where they need more support,” says Gina Hurley, director of student services, about the year Barnstable spent choosing an assessment.

Read the full article about measuring SEL by Victoria Clayton at District Administration.