NEA & MEA Presidents, AG Nessel visit Lincoln Park’s Resilient Schools program

(From right) NEA President Becky Pringle, MEA President Paula Herbart, Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel and MEA Vice President Chandra Madafferi learn about the Resilient Schools Program during a visit to Lincoln Park Public Schools on Friday. (Credit: Jeffrey Sauger)

School visit highlights the district’s Resilient Schools Project, expanded by COVID-19 funds

LINCOLN PARK, Mich. — National Education Association President Becky Pringle, Michigan Education Association President Paula Herbart, and Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel visited Raupp Elementary School Friday afternoon to learn about Lincoln Park Public Schools’ Resilient Schools Project.

The Resilient Schools Project supports student recovery in the wake of trauma and adversity. It is an outcome of the district’s investment into transitioning its focus to the whole child. (The program was featured in the most recent issue of the MEA Voice magazine.)

“The Resilient Schools Project has provided educators with the tools to successfully prioritize students’ social and emotional needs and better equip them for success in the classroom and beyond,” Herbart said. “I am proud of our members’ dedication to student well-being and trauma-informed education and very pleased to help highlight an innovative program being offered in Michigan public schools.”

Childhood trauma has been proven to have negative effects on the brain, which can impact the way students learn. Through LPPS’ initiative, students learn resiliency and tools to counteract the negative effects of traumatic experiences.

The initiative has proven successful since its 2018 launch and is being expanded with federal COVID-19 funds, allowing the district to provide additional tools and resources to support students’ social and emotional needs.

“Every student deserves a quality education that harnesses their unique experiences and instills them with the confidence that their trauma does not define them or their potential for a bright future,” Pringle said. “The needs for this kind of program have never been greater, which is why we’re so appreciative to President Biden, Governor Whitmer and other policymakers who’ve shown the leadership necessary to get vital resources for programs like this – especially through passage of the American Rescue Plan.”

NEA, MEA and Attorney General Nessel have been working together to ensure restorative justice programs like the Resilient Schools Project can be used to break the school-to-prison pipeline that too often captures young people in a spiral of disciplinary actions, rather than the support needed to change behaviors. (An example of that work is a recent joint op-ed in the Detroit Free Press on the need for greater attention to racial disparities in education discipline.)

NEA President Becky Pringle, MEA President Paula Herbart and Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel on a tour of Lincoln Park’s Raupp Elementary School and the district’s Resilient Schools Project. (Credit: Jeffrey Sauger)

“Current statistics prove more must be done to ensure every student has an equitable experience in our public school system,” Nessel said. “I look forward to seeing the Resilient Schools Project in action and remain committed to supporting our country’s next generation of leaders through important initiatives in our schools.”

Learn more about the program in this LPPS video: bit.ly/LPPSfamily.

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