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Trauma-Informed Schools: A School-Wide Effort

By Kelsey Rosten | March 2022

Although we are a few weeks past National School Counseling Week, I never miss an opportunity to celebrate the work that the amazing school counselors in Colorado continue to do day in and day out. Thank you all for your dedication to your students and your school communities!

These days, with all that has been happening in our world, trauma-informed schools are more important than ever. It takes a school-wide effort to support students through trauma and in building resilience. As I was preparing to write this letter, I came across the National Education Association’s web page regarding trauma-informed schools. I found an article that outlines some key points for a school-wide approach to trauma.

NEA’s Trauma-Sensitive Schools Require Whole School Transformation and Support
School districts that are inclusive of all school employees reinforce a collaborative share in the vision of supporting students impacted by trauma.
  • To successfully support students suffering from trauma, all school employees should be included in paid professional development that reinforces their knowledge and skills around childhood trauma and provide opportunities to learn effective ways to strengthen resilience.
  • All school employees play a vital role in offering support and resources. The support of a student impacted by trauma does not stop inside of a classroom. Support continues in the cafeteria, on the playground, in the hallways, in the school office and even on the school bus.
  • School communities that engage in shared leadership, vision and accountability around supporting students suffering from childhood trauma have a higher percentage of success.
  • For school employees to support students’ emotional and academic needs on a continuous basis, self-care is an essential professional need. This necessitates creating a school environment where all employees feel supported and safe.
Although it is not our responsibility to make sure these points are implemented in our schools and districts, school counselors can be transformational leaders in taking the necessary steps toward trauma-informed schools that fully support our students. I think it is so important to empower all staff members in playing their part in building resilience. What a difference it would make in the lives of our students if they felt supported in every aspect of their school day. And what a difference it would make in our school communities if we could support one another in the same way.

You can find more fantastic information about trauma-informed practices throughout this newsletter and so much more on the ASCA website.

As always, please feel free to reach out to the CSCA Board if you need support in any area of your important work. Check out our social media to stay up to date on all that is happening with CSCA!
Kelsey Rosten is CSCA past president and a school counselor at Mountain View High School. Contact her at