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Home » Student Success » Health & Safety » Mental, Social, & Behavioral Health » Social and Emotional Learning (SEL)

Social and Emotional Learning (SEL)

Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) is broadly understood as a process through which individuals build awareness and skills in managing emotions, setting goals, establishing relationships, and making responsible decisions that support success in school and in life. When we think of educating the whole child, their social and emotional development must be considered as a part of overall instruction.

SEL Implementation Tools

  1. SEL Standards, Benchmarks & Indicators- This document is to provide a scaffolded framework identifying observable developmental standards/benchmarks/Indicators.
  2. SEL On-Line Training Module- This module is designed to be part of OSPI's professional learning constellation of topics and can be used by Education Service Districts and LEA's for administering clock hours. 
  3. Implementation Guide- This Guide aligns with other SEL resources in Washington State such as the Washington SEL Standards/Benchmarks/Indicators, SEL Briefs, and the SEL Module, which are all part of Washington State’s SEL Resource Package.
  4. SEL Resource briefs for:

SEL Legislative Reports

  1. 2019- ESSB 5883, Sec. 501 (31) (2017) - Social Emotional Learning in Washington’s K-12 Public Schools. In 2017, the legislature directed OSPI to convene a workgroup to build on the previous work of 2015 by completing standards/benchmarks/indicators.
  2. 2016- ESSB 6052 Sec 501 [34] - Addressing Social and Emotional Learning in Washington’s K-12 Public Schools. In the 2015 the Legislature directed OSPI to convene a workgroup to recommend comprehensive benchmarks

SEL Research-Supporting Work

  1. WA Landscape Scan- Scan of social and emotional learning (SEL) activities across Washington state.
  2. National Scan- Scan of social and emotional learning (SEL) national activities
  3. Equity Brief- Brief focuses specifically on issues of equity as they relate to race, culture, and economic status.
  4. WA Survey Results (2019)- WA state stakeholder social and emotional learning survey with families, students, educators, and community partners. 
  5. Annotated bibliographies- Evidence basis for the development of social and emotional learning (SEL) indicators.
  6. Indicators Reference List- Reference list for the development of social and emotional learning (SEL) indicators.

SEL History and Overview

In 2015 the Washington State Legislature directed OSPI to convene a Social Emotional Learning Benchmarks workgroup to recommend comprehensive standards and benchmarks. The full report, along with notes from previous meetings are available on the SEL Benchmarks Workgroup website.

In 2016 the Washington State Legislature directed OSPI to create a SEL Learning Module. To learn more about the online SEL training module visit SEL On-Line Training Module

In 2017 the Washington State Legislature charged OSPI with continuing the initial work of the 2015 Social Emotional Learning Benchmarks Workgroup to develop detailed, culturally relevant grade level SEL indicators for the existing Benchmarks, solicit feedback from statewide stakeholders , and develop a model of best practices for implementation of grade level SEL indicators. The report on this body of work must be completed by June 30, 2019.