Grace Lopez-AliagaPronouns: (Ella, She, Her)Social Emotional Learning SpecialistSection 504 Plan CoordinatorEquity, Diversity & Inclusion LiaisonSources of Strength Student Voice SponsorSigns of Suicide Site

What is Social Emotional 

Learning (SEL)?

SEL is the process through which all young people and adults acquire and apply the knowledge, skills, and attitudes to develop healthy identities, manage emotions and achieve personal and collective goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain supportive relationships, and make responsible and caring decisions.

Social Emotional Learning advances educational equity and excellence through authentic school-family-community partnerships to establish learning environments and experiences that feature trusting and collaborative relationships, rigorous and meaningful curriculum and instruction, and ongoing evaluation. 

SEL can help address various forms of inequity and empower young people and adults to co-create thriving schools and contribute to safe, healthy, and just communities. 

UPDATED definition from Collaborative for Academic, Social and Emotional Learning (CASEL), 2021.

Who are Social Emotional Learning Specialists (SELS)? 

SELS are mental health professionals across the fields of school psychology, school social work, and school counseling with specific expertise in prevention based tiered implementation of Social Emotional Learning.

 SELS’ support school-based implementation of positive school climate & culture efforts, the direct instruction of SEL, and MTSS tiered supports. 

SELS facilitate the use of data-based problem solving across the tiers to ensure increased behavioral, prosocial, and academic outcomes for all students.

Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) is the process through which children gain and apply the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary to deal effectively with daily tasks and challenges.  

Jeffco Public Schools has adopted the five core components of social and emotional learning outlined by the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL). 

SEL takes place within the context of safe and supportive school, family, and community environments that aids children's development and provides opportunities and recognition for successfully applying these skills. This approach promotes intrapersonal, interpersonal, and cognitive competence.

Why is Social Emotional Learning important?

Social Emotional Learning (SEL) helps youth acquire and apply the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary to understand and manage emotions, set and achieve positive goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain positive relationships, and make responsible decisions. Social and emotional skill building can have a positive impact on school climate, help students become good learners, and prevent or reduce many risky behaviors, including drug use, violence, bullying and dropping out.

Durlak, Weissberg et al.'s 2011 analysis of 213 studies that focused on SEL in schools indicates that students receiving quality SEL instruction demonstrated:

Taylor, Rebecca D. et al.’s “Promoting Positive Youth Development Through School-Based Social and Emotional Learning Interventions: A Meta-Analysis of Follow-Up Effects” indicates that the benefits of SEL last after the intervention has ended.

American Enterprise Institute and the Brookings Institution 2015 analysis on three domains of life that impact poverty in America; family, work and education. Recommendations to improve education include educating the whole child to promote social-emotional and character development as well as academic skills.

Jones, Damon E. et al.’s 2015 study focused on the Relationship Between Kindergarten Social Competence and Future Wellness.

Belfield, Clive et al.’s 2015 analysis of the economic returns to investment for social emotional learning reveal:

Suicide Prevention Awareness Month

September is Suicide Prevention Awareness month. Jeffco Schools  is taking time to educate, take action, and promote awareness. Here is a link to resources regarding suicide prevention awareness. There are also three free Question, Persuade, Refer (QPR) virtual sessions families/caregivers can attend.


Join Us at SUMMIT JEFFCO: Empowering Families for Student Success!

Date: Saturday, September 23

Time: 9 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.

Location: Green Mountain High School, Lakewood, Colo.

Summit Jeffco is a unique gathering where families can connect with district and school staff, as well as experts in various fields, to explore important topics that impact our students. Discover how you can play an active role in improving your student's educational experience and foster their growth.

Breakfast and lunch will be provided. Childcare available on first come first serve basis.  Register today!


Thursday Oct 5th  5pm - 8:45pm @ Creighton Middle School

Join us for Hands On, Practical Information and Tools to Support Yourself and Your Kids.  Sandwiches and snacks will be provided.  Free supervised activities for children years and older - Click HERE to register

Grace Lopez-Aliaga

Pronouns: (Ella, She, Her)

Wheat Ridge High School

Social Emotional Learning SpecialistSection 504 Plan CoordinatorEquity, Diversity & Inclusion LiaisonSources of Strength & Student Voice SponsorSigns of Suicide Site