Data driven decisions for SEL and behavioral interventions
Big challenges with data and documentation of student supports in non-academic areas
The challenges involved in documentation of social-emotional learning (SEL) and behavioral interventions are a whole degree of magnitude more difficult than with academics:
- Objective, standardized tests of social-emotional competency do not exist
- Stringent student and family privacy regulations affect who can see what
- Social-cultural issues have more relevance than with academic issues
- With behavioral interventions it’s often necessary to document what the intervention is/was, why it is necessary, and whether it was completed
- Students’ most serious needs for social-emotional supports often come from outside of school; many families consider them “not the school’s business;” yet without supports to address those personal risk factors, SEL training can fail to produce results.
Ripple Effects’ data management system meets these challenges
Like the rest of the Ripple Effects system, Ripple Effects Data Manager with two Data Viewers is entirely strengths-based. Other systems, including some very good ones, like the SWSS system, track behavioral infractions. Ripple Effects complements those systems, does not compete with them. It monitors and documents the development of collective, and individual social-emotional strengths, documents dosage levels of personal exploration, and tracks progress in meeting individual behavioral goals:
- Being able to easily share a students RTI plan with all those who can support it (but not unauthorized personnel) increases the chance that students will receive an integrated system of personal supports.
- Documenting and sharing the good things that some teachers are seeing in a student provides practical support and direction to the teacher who has become narrowly focused on a problem area
- Having a written, site-based, implementation plan saved into the system supports greater sustainability through teacher turnover.
- On the administrative side, educators can customize groups to include only those student for whom they responsible
- Program directors can assign, and system administrators implement, different levels of access to information (such as RTI plans), based on setting and relationship to students.