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Safe & Supportive Schools


Safe and Supportive Schools Grants

The Safe and Supportive Schools Grant Programs (Fund Code 335 and 337) are state-funded programs, funded through state line item 7061-9612.

Most specifically, this work is intended to help districts ensure that each school creates a safe, positive, healthy and inclusive whole-school learning environment and makes effective use of a system for integrating services and aligning initiatives that promote students' behavioral health, including social and emotional learning, bullying prevention, trauma sensitivity, dropout prevention, truancy reduction, children's mental health, foster care and homeless youth education, inclusion of students with disabilities, positive behavioral approaches that reduce suspensions and expulsions, and other similar initiatives. Schools that receive funding (through their district) under this grant program will either convene a school team, respond to the questions in the Safe and Supportive Schools Self-Assessment Tool, determine areas to prioritize for improvements, and finalize an action plan; or implement and assess progress on a previously created action plan.

Fiscal Year 2019-2020 (FY20) Safe and Support Schools Grants

Fund Code (FC) 335 Safe and Supportive Schools Competitive Grant

Note: For more information about this grant opportunity, please see the Funding Opportunity RFP, the information below, and the slides from the informational webinar (in the webinar section).

Grant Program Purpose: The purpose of this state funded competitive grant program is to provide funding to school districts (and their selected schools) to organize, integrate, and sustain school and district-wide efforts to create safe and supportive school environments. Additionally, this grant is designed to coordinate and align student support initiatives based on their findings from completing the Safe and Supportive Schools (SaSS) Framework and Self-Reflection Tool* (SaSS Tool).

The main priorities for this grant are to help each participating school create an equitable, safe, positive, healthy, culturally-competent, and inclusive whole-school learning environment for all students; in addition, this grant prioritizes schools/districts' effort to make effective use of systems for integrating services Download Word Document and aligning initiatives that promote students' behavioral health, through one of two grant applicant options:

  • Option One: Action Planning
    These grantees will convene a school team composed of various stakeholders (e.g., including but not limited to teachers, nurses, counselors, parents, etc.) to review and respond to the questions in the SaSS Tool.
    Based on the school team's reflections informed by using the SaSS Tool, the team will identify school and district areas to prioritize for improvements related to creating safer and more supportive learning environments, and will finalize a school plan that is aligned to school and district priorities, and a district plan that supports the schools' efforts.
    The action plans shall address all six sections of the SaSS Tool:
    1. Leadership, Infrastructure, and Culture
    2. Professional Learning Opportunities
    3. Access to Resources and Services
    4. Teaching and Learning that fosters Safe and Supportive Environments
    5. School Policies, Procedures, and Protocols
    6. Family Engagement

  • Option Two: School Based Implementation and Mentorship/Support
    1. These grantees will begin or continue to implement school-based action plans (and associated district-support plans) that were created in prior year(s), i.e., in or before school year 2018-2019. The creation of those action plans must have been informed by a local self-reflection process using the SaSS/BHPS Framework and Tool. Those completed action plans must be submitted with the applications, and whether it is submitted will be considered as part of the competitive review process.
    2. These grantees will also serve as mentors/supports for Option One grantees, other new SaSS Tool users, schools and districts that are new to implementation, as well as the Department and Commission and others as needed and appropriate. The areas of mentorship/support may include providing feedback to the Department or the Commission at meetings, presenting at online, regional, and statewide conferences, or providing direct support or guidance related to one or more of the aspects of using the Framework and Tool to inform action plan creation and implementation, or another area agreed to by the applicant and Department.

Eligible Applicants: Massachusetts school districts and educational collaboratives are eligible to apply for funding. Applicants may apply for up to $20,000 total per district, with a maximum of $10,000 per school under Option one: Action Planning. Applicants may apply for up to $10,000 per district under Option two: School Based Implementation and Mentorship/Support.

Each district may only apply for one of the two Options detailed above (Option one: Action Planning, or Option two: School Based Implementation and Mentorship/Support).

Note: Former FC 335 grantees are among the entities eligible to apply for either of the above Options, provided the specific requirements are met for the schools to be included in the application under that Option. For Option one: Action Planning, former FC 335 grantees may apply for schools that have not yet utilized (or at least have not since summer 2016) the SaSS/BHPS Self-Assessment Tool and used it to inform action planning.

Note: Regarding collaborative eligibility (new this year): In accordance with "The Education Collaborative statute" (Chapter 40, Section 4E) which was amended and signed into law on January 10, 2019. "…The department may designate educational collaboratives as eligible recipients for any applicable federal or state grants to cities, towns, and regional school districts for educational programs."

  • In light of this new statute, educational collaboratives may consider applying for this grant to carry out safe and supportive school grant activities (team reflection informed by the SaSS Tool, and subsequent action planning and implementation to create and strengthen safe and supportive learning environments) for the collaborative's own full-time educational programs. In this case, please consider the educational program a "school" and the collaborative a "district" when completing the application materials.

  • Alternatively, educational collaboratives are also now allowed to apply on behalf of interested school districts (and either collaborative or districts can serve as the lead/fiscal agent) to help support and facilitate school and district-based teams with multiple stakeholder involvement to engage in the grant activities described above and throughout this grant opportunity. In this case, the collaborative would be considered neither the school nor the district, but instead a facilitator or fiscal agent, or other type of support, and would be supporting the efforts of the school and district teams who will be reflecting, action planning, and implementing plans based on their self-identified priorities. Both collaborative and district leaders should sign the grant assurances document, to indicate both entities agree to the grant expectations. There is already a place for the school district superintendent to sign. A line can be added to the document, to note the collaborative leader name and title, and to add the signature.

Request for Proposals (RFP) Application, Due Date, and Submission Information: Applications are due Friday, August 16, 2019. Please see the FC 335 RFP for more information.

Fund Code (FC) 337 Safe and Supportive Schools Continuation Grant — will be posted here soon (for FY19 FC 335 Option One Action Planning Grantees)

Safe and Supportive Schools Grant Program Evaluation

During school years 2017-2018 and 2018-2019, the Department (DESE) contracted with the Research and Evaluation Department of the Collaborative for Educational Services (CES) to evaluate the Safe and Supportive Schools Grant Program, through a competitive Request for Response (RFR) statewide procurement process. The 2018 grant program evaluation report Download PDF Document and 2019 evaluation report Download PDF Document outlines themes, positive findings, and common challenges for grantees.

Previous Safe and Supportive Schools Grant Recipients

FY19 | FY18 | FY17 | FY16 | FY14 (and continuation grant recipients available upon request)

Webinars

Download PDF Document
FC 335 FY20 Competitive Grant — Informational Webinar — July 23 (2pm) and August 6, 2019 (10am). Register online.

Professional Development Opportunities — for Grantees and Others

Information about FY20 Professional Development will be posted here once confirmed

FY19 Professional Development Series: 2018-2019 CalendarDownload Word Document

March 27, 2019 Statewide Convening:

Safe and Supportive Learning Environments: Using an Equity Lens to Support All Students Statewide Convening Materials and Resources: The statewide convening took place in Leominster. Materials and resources from most of the workshops can be found below. Please note that "AM" indicates a morning session and "PM" an afternoon session.

Download PowerPoint File
Keynote address, Dr. Darnisa Amante, CEO and Founder, DEEP
Download PowerPoint File
AM1: Trauma Informed Practices Panel
View HTML Page
AM2: Promoting Resilience and Healthy Outcomes for LGBTQ Students
Download PowerPoint File
AM3: New Beginnings: Strategies for At-Risk Youth
Download PowerPoint File
AM4: Suffolk County Sheriff's Department-Collaborative Approaches to dismantling the School to prison pipeline.
Download PowerPoint File
AM5: Infusing Equity throughout All Aspects of School Operations
Download PowerPoint File
AM6: Social and Emotional Practices/ Open Circle Topics for Students of Color — Slides
Download PDF Document
AM6: Social and Emotional Practices/ Open Circle Topics for Students of Color — Handout
Download PowerPoint File
AM7: Developing a system wide approach to supporting students with social/emotional/behavioral/mental health challenges though action planning
Download PowerPoint File
AM8: Family Engagement Practices to Foster Safe and Supportive Learning Environments
Download PowerPoint File
PM2: Understanding MA School Discipline Law: Promising Practices to End Discipline Disparities
Download PowerPoint File
PM3: Creating a supportive climate and ecology for high school success for Latino students
Download PowerPoint File
PM4: Supporting Social Emotional Skill Building for Young Children through PBS the Pyramid Model
PM4: additional resources:
View External Link   Massachusetts Pyramid Model Facebook page
View External Link   Massachusetts Pyramid Model Pinterest page
View External Link   The National Center for Pyramid Model Innovation
View External Link   The Pyramid Model Consortium
Download PowerPoint File
PM5: Putting Race at the Forefront
Download PowerPoint File
PM6: Supporting Early Learners with Trauma-Informed Practice
Download PowerPoint File
PM7: Psychosocial and Behavioral Data to Support Multi-tiered Systems of Support
Download PowerPoint File
PM8: Best Practices for Educational Stability

March 23, 2018 Statewide Convening:

Safe and Supportive School Convening Statewide Convening Materials and Resources: The statewide convening took place in Worcester. Materials and resources from most of the workshops can be found below. Please note that "AM" indicates a morning session and "PM" an afternoon session.

Download Word Document
AM1: Welcoming All Families Starting a Home Visit Program — Home Visiting Form
Download Word Document
AM1: Welcoming All Families Starting a Home Visit Program — Welcome Letter
Download PowerPoint File
AM2: A Shared Vision Aligned SEL in School and Out of School Time — PPT
Download Word Document
AM4: Developing a System Wide Approach to Supporting Students Through Action Planning — Data Crosswalk
Download PowerPoint File
AM4: Developing a System Wide Approach to Supporting Students Through Action Planning — PPT Slides
Download PowerPoint File
AM5: Implementing A Universal Social-Emotional Screener in Grades K–8 — PPT
Download PowerPoint File
AM7: Community Approach to Supporting Young Children, Their Families, and their Learning — PPT
Download PowerPoint File
AM8: From fighting Fires to Sowing the Field Innovations in deploying student support staff — PPT
Download PowerPoint File
PM2: Building our Trauma Informed Capacities — PPT
Download PowerPoint File
PM3: Integrating Social-Emotional Learning Across the Curriculum — PPT
Download PowerPoint File
PM4: Trauma-Informed Practice Along a Continuum — PPT
Download PowerPoint File
PM7: Integrating Daily Mindful Awareness Practices Into K–12 Classrooms — PPT
Download Word Document
PM7: Integrating Daily Mindful Awareness Practices Into K–12 Classrooms — Resources
Download PowerPoint File
PM8: Best Practices in School Discipline-Chapter 222 — PPT

Additional Resources:

View External Link
Creating Schools that "Fit" Our Kids
View External Link
The Practice Base for How We Learn
View External Link
Trauma Sensitive Schools Books and Video


Last Updated: July 23, 2019
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