Special Report
Student Well-Being From Our Research Center

How Educators View Social-Emotional Learning, in Charts

By Kevin Bushweller — November 07, 2022 1 min read
Students in Kristine Hunchuck's middle school class participate in an SEL lesson at the Jefferson PK-8 school in Warren, Ohio, on Nov. 1, 2022.
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

You might think that the politically charged attacks against social-emotional learning highlighted in the news media would be chipping away at educator support nationwide for the approach.

But, so far, that appears not to be the case, according to recent survey data from the EdWeek Research Center. More than a third of the teachers, principals, and district leaders surveyed said social-emotional learning, or SEL, was one of many strategies available to them; more than a quarter said it was a transformational way to improve schools; and almost a quarter said it was a promising idea. Just 9 percent said it was a passing fad.

It’s important to remember that social-emotional learning differs from providing mental health services. SEL teaches skills such as emotional regulation, empathy, and collaboration to help students develop into well-rounded, confident people who can work well with others. It does not provide diagnostic or clinical treatment for mental health conditions.

But some school district SEL programs have run up against intense opposition from parents and politicians, who take issue with how SEL development is being linked to learning about racism, sexism, and LGBTQ issues.

Even so, as the following charts show, support for SEL among educators remains strong across the country and is seen by many as a strategy that will also help improve academic performance.

education week logo subbrand logo RC RGB

Data analysis for this article was provided by the EdWeek Research Center. Learn more about the center’s work.

Coverage of leadership, summer learning, social and emotional learning, arts learning, and afterschool is supported in part by a grant from The Wallace Foundation, at www.wallacefoundation.org. Education Week retains sole editorial control over the content of this coverage.
A version of this article appeared in the November 16, 2022 edition of Education Week as How Educators View Social-Emotional Learning, in Charts

Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
IT Infrastructure & Management Webinar
From Chaos to Clarity: How to Master EdTech Management and Future-Proof Your Evaluation Processes
The road to a thriving educational technology environment is paved with planning, collaboration, and effective evaluation.
Content provided by Instructure
Special Education Live Online Discussion A Seat at the Table - Special Education: Proven Interventions for Academic Success
Special education should be a launchpad, not a label. Join the conversation on how schools can better support ALL students.
Special Education K-12 Essentials Forum Innovative Approaches to Special Education
Join this free virtual event to explore innovations in the evolving landscape of special education.

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Student Well-Being By Some Measures, Students' Well-Being Has Been Stable for a Decade, Study Shows
A Stanford report examined high school students’ well-being, sense of belonging, and engagement over more than a decade.
5 min read
Tired schoolboy fell asleep on a class at elementary school.
iStock/Getty
Student Well-Being Opinion What Should Students Do Over the Summer?
Educators share tips for keeping kids off their screens and mentally engaged over the long break.
3 min read
Young girl reads a book with cat in the garden. Summer holidays illustration.
iStock/Getty
Student Well-Being Opinion What's Behind the Explosion in Student Absenteeism?
Kids aren’t returning to school after COVID. What are the implications for policy and practice?
8 min read
Image shows a multi-tailed arrow hitting the bullseye of a target.
DigitalVision Vectors/Getty
Student Well-Being To Ban or Not to Ban? Educators, Parents, and Students Weigh In on Cellphones
School community members share opinions on cellphones in schools, describing how the problem should be handled—if at all.
5 min read
Hands holding smartphone. The screen is lighting everything up.
Education Week + iStock + E+/Getty Images