GDOE to conduct social and emotional wellness training for schools

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The Guam Department of Education (GDOE) will be conducting social and emotional wellness training for school administrators, division administrators, school counselors, social workers and support staff beginning next week. In addition, private and charter school counselors will also be able to participate in the professional development opportunity.

The training will be conducted by the GDOE School Based Behavioral Health Clinic team that consists of GDOE school psychologists and clinical interns.

The social and emotional training is focused on mental health issues related to the ongoing COVID-19 health pandemic. As a result of continued change and uncertainty stemming from the pandemic, individuals throughout the community may be experiencing mental health issues such as anxiety, stress, trauma, loss/grief, and depression. This training will discuss signs and symptoms of these mental health issues, coping strategies, dealing with uncertainty, and strategies for self-care.

This training is important because it will help school personnel to identify signs and symptoms of COVID-19 behavioral health concerns for both students and adults. Additionally, the training will provide employees with coping skills and strategies. Finally, the training will also provide resources to help those in need of further support or professional help.

The social and emotional wellness training series will begin on Monday, July 13, from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. and will be held via Zoom video conferencing. The training schedule for next week is as follows:

Monday, July 13, 8 a.m. – 3 p.m. (school and division administrators)

Tuesday, July 14, 8 a.m. – 3 p.m. (school counselors and social workers)

Wednesday, July 15, 8 a.m. – 3 p.m. (school support staff)

Thursday, July 16, 8 a.m. – 3 p.m. (school support staff)

“As we prepare to welcome our students and teachers back to school this fall, ensuring the proper social and emotional wellness supports is key to ensuring our students are ready to learn,” GDOE Superintendent Jon Fernandez said. “This training will also help to ensure that our school leaders and staff members are mentally prepared to help our families tackle the challenges ahead.”

“We hope this training will raise awareness about the mental health impacts that can stem from the uncertainty our community is facing not only here in Guam, but worldwide,” district psychologist Nadine Cepeda said. “We hope these strategies will help our school communities become more resilient and successful as we work to welcome our students back this fall.”

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