Nancy Markowitz, Ph.D., Executive Director of Center for Reaching & Teaching the Whole Child and Professor Emerita at San José State University, started CRTWC at San Jose State University, using the K-8 Multiple Subject program as a case study to integrate social-emotional learning into teacher preparation. After seven years within SJSU, CRTWC moved to our current fiscal sponsor, Community Initiatives. Our mission is to enhance our schools’ capacity to meet the needs of children and those educators who work with them by offering a process and framework for integrating social, emotional, and cultural competencies into K-12 preservice teacher preparation.
We believe that attention to social, emotional, and cultural competencies is foundational to the achievement of academic goals and student and educator ability to thrive.
CRTWC is unique in focusing on all stages of the professional development pipeline – developing both students’ and teachers’ social, emotional, and cultural competencies; nesting these competencies within the curriculum and classroom learning environment.
Center for Reaching & Teaching the Whole Child takes a systemic approach rather than providing an add-on program.
We focus on bringing social-emotional learning skills together with culturally responsive teaching practices.
This integrated approach equips educators with a social, emotional, and cultural lens that supports them in integrating these competencies into the content areas. Using this lens encourages teachers to ask different questions and gather different kinds of data that leads to different, more productive responses to students.
Equipping educators with social, emotional, and cultural competencies allows them to provide a learning environment where students can take risks, make mistakes, and support one another.
Our organization shares this work by offering a yearlong Educator Institute, where participants from school districts, county offices of education, and university teacher educators come together as a professional learning community to focus on how to explicitly integrate social, emotional, and cultural competencies into their work.