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Thriving Schools Expands Social and Emotional Health Resources through Resilience in School Environments

A Message from Annie Reed, National Director of Thriving Schools


It is with great excitement that we, at Kaiser Permanente Thriving Schools, are announcing today some exciting developments that will deepen our ability to serve the social and emotional health of school communities.

In partnership with the Alliance for a Healthier Generation and Discovery Education, Kaiser Permanente is expanding our Resilience in School Environments, or RISE, initiative to offer a whole new portfolio of no-cost virtual and onsite resources designed to support schools in their efforts to foster greater social and emotional resiliency. Our partnership with these incredible organizations will allow us to reach thousands of more schools across the country with timely and important resources, empowering school teachers, staff, and districts with tools to address some of the underlying factors of stress in schools and develop strategies and practices that foster more positive school environments.

As a health care provider, Kaiser Permanente is deeply invested in building healthier communities by improving conditions for health and equity that will help people have more healthy years of life. We understand that schools are an important focal point for communities to come together to generate positive, healthy change.

That’s why we created Thriving Schools. We believe in the power of schools to transform health and strengthen learning opportunities for everyone in their community, and we want to work collaboratively with schools, districts, and community organizations to make that happen.

We have also long understood the impacts of trauma and stress on health. We were one of the first organizations to recognize the link between trauma and health through our landmark ACEs study, conducted with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Students, teachers, and staff are often more stressed out in school spaces these days. Trauma and stress not only affect students in their ability to learn but also affect teachers and staff and can have lifelong implications for an individual’s overall health. These issues play out at every level of the school, and there typically aren’t existing resources in place to handle them.

Thriving Schools takes a holistic view, working with teachers, staff, and students to build resiliency for all. We put the tools into the hands of teachers and staff, enabling them to address their own stress and trauma, as well as that of their students.

Students need to feel they matter, to know they have caring adults they can turn to. They need to learn life skills such as problem solving and managing emotions.

Teachers need to feel supported and that their voices matter in driving positive change. They need scheduled time to reflect and plan, calming spaces to rejuvenate during the day and a collaborative environment of shared ideas. This helps them be happier at school, better equipped to focus on what they are there to do — help students learn and flourish.

RISE focuses on students and teacher and school staff wellness on a national scale, making sure they have what they need to best support their mental health and well-being.

We believe we’ve chosen the right partners to bring RISE to as many schools as we can. Together with our partners, we are thrilled to embark on this work together and look forward to rolling out more resources in the weeks and months ahead.

Read the full press release. (excerpt below)

New Kaiser Permanente Partnership Tackles the Challenge of Trauma and Stress Faced by Faculty, Staff and Students Nationwide 

    • Kaiser Permanente, Alliance for a Healthier Generation and Discovery Education partner to deliver Resilience in School Environments initiative that addresses the social and emotional health of millions of faculty, staff and students
    • Initiative builds on Kaiser Permanente/CDC research findings that those with four or more adverse childhood experiences are 12 times more likely to attempt suicide and those with six or more have a 20-year shorter life expectancy
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