Bullying Awareness Week ran from Nov. 15 to Nov. 19, but the message is something that Clearview Public Schools (CPS) strives to carry all year long through the many supports they have in place for staff and students alike.
Teachers and members of the Caring and Resilient Students (CARS) program work together using universal strategies to help struggling students.
These strategies could include ‘friendship groups’ where staff and facilitators discuss what it means to be a friend, though other similar programs are offered division-wide.
In cases where the universal strategies are not enough and students continue to struggle, the student’s teacher could get the Family School Liaison (FSL) worker involved.
The FSL would work one-on-one with the struggling student, working on helping them build relationships.
After an assessment and some time working with the FSL, if it is determined that a student needs more support, the FSL can then refer the student to outside supports, such as a psychologist, therapist, or any other resource deemed appropriate.
“We each have an area of expertise to support the students in our care,” said director of Inclusive Learning Grant Gosse.
These supports are not the only ones that CPS offers, however.
“Some students require additional support,” said Gosse.
The need for the additional support is why Clearview has an early learning coordinator in charge of the division’s Start Right (pre-Kindergarten) and Kindergarten program, an in-house speech language pathologist, an occupational therapist, and a former FSL who is now an in-house provisional psychologist.
When required the division also contracts out for qualified support staff to work with blind or visually impaired students, or deaf or hard of hearing students.
Other tools Clearview Public Schools has been using to help students succeed are modifications in the classroom, beginning with audio system upgrades in 2015.
“They are in every classroom,” said Gosse. “They have been helpful with lesson delivery.”
The audio systems assist teachers in projecting their voices so that students can hear the lessons more clearly.
Other tools used by the school division include Chrome Books, iPads, a variety of Google Classroom tools, and the c-pen. The c-pen is a device that is swiped over a word like highlighter which then tells the student what the word is, to assist with a student’s reading comprehension.
“Our job is supporting all our students,” said Gosse. “No matter what their gifts, talents, or growth areas.”