The Amygdala and Learning Sens -ory Input Amygdala Prefrontal Cortex Conscious Response and Learning Amygdala From The MindUp Curriculum Fight, Flight or Freeze Fight, Flight or Freeze Prefrontal Cortex 19
It can cause toxic stress; which results in anxiety, depression, anger, hostility, dissociation and drug use. Reducing toxic stress will help improve math scores and capabilities in science, technology and engineering.
Not: What’s wrong with you? But: What happened to you?
ACEs and School Performance Students dealing with trauma: –Are 2 and ½ times more likely to fail a grade –Score lower on standardized achievement tests –Have more receptive or expressive language difficulties –Are suspended or expelled more often –Are designated to special education more frequently
ACE data echoes… The Minnesota Student Survey Bullying Analysis, 2010 “Students regularly involved in bullying as a bully, victim or bully/victim, share associated experiences, most of them negative.” Bullying in Minnesota Schools: An Analysis of the Minnesota Student Survey
–Intra-familial and extra-familial sexual abuse –Family drug use and family violence –Bullies, victims and bully/victims are twice as likely to be obese –More likely to report chronic physical and mental health problems –suicidal thoughts in the last year. Minnesota Student Survey Bullying Analysis 2010
stand and talk: How do you feel, what did you think about when you learned about ACE and the brain research?
What I thought about… My family, my friends Restorative practices as building new neural pathways, as a way to re-awaken resiliency. Yellow Medicine County Circle Sentencing Minneapolis Public Schools Restorative Conference Process for expulsion cases
Yellow Medicine County Ten years of building community capacity through County facilitated Circles of community volunteers
Yellow Medicine County Restorative Programming Circle Sentencing for adolescent applicants Family & Community Circle Circle of Hope (CD support) Support To Schools Implementing Circle
Yellow Medicine County The youth who complete Circle are either: – on track with credits to graduate (1%) – received their general equivalency diploma (2-3%) – has invited their Circle members to their graduation party (90%) –77 start Circle, 37 completed.
YME Circle Program The program runs on 1 FTE: $ 77,000 US The County has saved $215,000 Volunteers have donated over $139,000 in volunteer time Youth have paid $47,000 in restitution.
Kandiyohi County 2.25 FTE – 3 Facilitators; 6 Circles – Circle Sentencing Chippewa County 2 FTE ; 2 Circles – Circle Sentencing Swift County.75 FTE ; 2 Sentencing Circles & Circles in Schools Redwood County 1 FTE; 4 Circles – Circle Sentencing & Aftercare Circle Lyon County 1.6 FTE ; 3 Circles – Circle Sentencing & Transition Circle Yellow Medicine County FTE; 12 Circles – Circle Sentencing, Family & Community Circle, Circle of Hope, Chippewa RJ Contract Parallel Protection Process Facilitation, Family Safety Planning Meetings; Circles in schools REGIONAL GROWTH
Alternative to Expulsion: Family and Youth Restorative Conference Program Minneapolis Public Schools Minneapolis Legal Rights Center Evaluation by the University of Minnesota
Participants 83 students, 85 parents 67% male, 33% female 55% African American (33% general pop) 12% American Indian (4% General pop) Drugs, Weapons and Assault Violations
Evaluation: Student engagement
Evaluation: family engagement
Evaluation findings Program builds parent support for learning, increases parent child and parent school communication and parent connection to school
RCP interrupts disengagement …from school; returns students to academic progress –Better attendance, grades –Fewer suspensions –Continued credit accrual –Slight increase in GPA –Increase in the number of students on track to graduate
High participant satisfaction “…the program has …respectfully engaged parents as partners to resolve difficult challenges.” Even the administrators were pleased: –Glad for disciplinary options –Like use of outside agency that all trusted –Shifted perceptions among school and family to view each others as allies rather than adversaries.
Resilience is common and… arises from …normal rather than extraordinary human capabilities, relationships, and resources. In other words, resilience emerges from ordinary magic. –Ann Masten, 2009
TRAUMA INFORMED CARE “…each adult working with any child or adolescent (should) presume that the child has been trauma exposed…providing unconditional respect to the child and being careful not to challenge him/her in ways that produce shame and humiliation.
“Such an approach has no down side, since children who have been exposed to trauma require it, and other, more fortunate children deserve and can also benefit from this fundamentally humanistic commitment.” –Gordon R. Hodas MD. Pennsylvania Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services, February 2006 TRAUMA INFORMED CARE 29
When we are new and when we are fresh and young, our hearts are very open in a way that they may never again be the rest of our lives, so the impressions that are made on us and the good that is done for us, the kindness and generosity by which a child lives, are never forgotten. Never forgotten. Nothing that you ever do for a child is ever wasted. Ever. You may never know exactly what the child saw, or how that child received it, but any gift you give to a young person is permanent…. because it is then given to other people and that is as permanent as we know. Garrison Keillor
Smile at kids, Call them by name. Chii Mii Gwetch!
references ACE Interface, Washington State Yellow Medicine County Circle Sentencing Program Alt to Suspension: Barbara J. McMorris, PhD, University of Minnesota – Kara J. Beckman, MA, University of Minnesota –