Trauma-Informed Schools

By Feride Castillo & Vivett Dukes

#SafeSpaceConvos is a Twitter chat led and hosted by teacher Vivett Dukes on alternating Mondays at 8:30pm ET. In a forum that encourages honest dialogue and connection, we come together to learn, grow, and co-construct solutions to pressing problems for students.

This #SafeSpaceConvos chat was co-hosted by Vivett and Feride Castillo, co-founder and director of advocacy for Empowerment Collaborative of Long Island, Inc. Feride is certified in trauma-informed care through the University of Buffalo School of Social work with a focus on individuals and service providers within the criminal justice system, as well as a Certified Alcohol and Substance Abuse Counselor (CASAC-T). For the last five years, Ms. Castillo has provided bi-lingual court advocacy, case management, and other supportive services to victims of domestic violence, victims of human trafficking, and at-risk, incarcerated, and/or court involved youth who are often suffering from on-going trauma.


Chat Highlights

Q1: What does trauma in our youth look like?


Q2: How do teacher-student relationships either reduce the effects of trauma or antagonize trauma? What are some examples?


Q3: What school policies and practices are setting our kids up to fail? How so?


Q4: What are some solutions for creating trauma-informed schools? What specific resources, methods, and trainings are available to help educators?


Resource Round-Up

Collins, C. & Ehrenhalt, J. (n.d.) Best practices for serving LGBTQ students. Teaching Tolerance. Available at:

Expanded Success Initiative. (n.d.). Critically conscious educators rising (CCER) series. Lesson plans available at:

Romero, V. E., Robertson, R., & Warner, A. Building resilience in students impacted by adverse childhood experiences. Corwin.

Shevrin Venet, A. (2016, April 11). Getting started with trauma-informed teaching. Unconditional Learning. Available at:


Be bold. Be authentic. Join #SafeSpaceConvos

You’re invited to join the next chat on Monday, January 7, 2018 at 8:30pm ET. You can also read through these archived chats for insights and resources from your peers.