Local Elementary Schools Part of Trauma Pilot Program - WTRF 7 News Sports Weather - Wheeling Steubenville

Local Elementary Schools Part of Trauma Pilot Program

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WHEELING -

Five regional schools are pilot programs for a new project designed to bring trauma-informed services to early elementary classes.

Woodsdale Elementary is one of the schools that's part of the new Trauma Informed Elementary School (TIES) pilot program. It's being put on by Crittenton and Wellspring Family Services. 

The program aims to bring early intervention to any students who exhibit symptoms of stress or trauma in the classroom, which could in turn affect their ability to learn.

Wednesday night's program at Woodsdale helped parents understand how they can better work with their children.

In addition, teachers are being trained to understand exactly what trauma is and how they can work with the children who may have experienced it.

School Counselor Allyson Kangisser said it's an all-encompassing program that gets children the support they need. "The teachers are just more open to looking at trauma as being part of the problem versus the child just misbehaving. So, it's kind of created a different culture in our school, and we've just built really good relationships with the Wellspring people, she said. 

Kangisser continued, "It's just been all-around awesome. I am really excited to have it here and I look forward to it next year and hope that all the grants for it are renewed so we can keep benefiting the students."

"I definitely see there is a big need, you know it's hard to look at media and not see some sort of tragedy happening almost daily so we know that, from the research alone has shown us that developmental trauma is a pretty prevalent issue," said TIES program manager, Joe King. 

The program also teaches students how to deal with the emotions they have regarding traumatic situations, and gives them effective coping strategies to help get through the day. 

The program is also being held at Weirton, Middle Creek and Sistersville Elementary, but TIES is hoping to expand it into other schools in the coming years. The program is also being held at Fairplains Elementary School in Wood County. 
 

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