The Safe & Caring Schools Program
Safe & Caring Schools Teacher Resource Books.

Safe & Caring Schools Teacher Resource Books
Each resource guide gives you the following:
  • Guidelines for implementing a schoolwide program of social and emotional learning
  • Assessment tools to measure student growth and teacher effectiveness
  • Tips for involving the entire school staff and parents in the program
  • Common monthly themes across all grades, for example, January is about bullying and March is conflict resolution
  • More than 100 lesson plans, all in a simple, easy-to-use format, and all with literature connections to extend the learning
  • Student activity pages for reinforcing the lessons, ready to photocopy or to print from the CD-ROM included with each book
Skills for School,  Skills for Life
Safe & Caring Schools (SCS) is a research-based program for grades PK-8 that integrates social and emotional learning (SEL), and character education into daily academic instruction. SCS decreases negative behaviors, and builds a positive school climate that reduces stress and encourages academic success. Integrating SEL with academic instruction, enhances student performance, reduces violence and bullying, and improves the climate for learning. “The Benefits of School-Based Social Emotional Learning Programs,” a major 2008 report involving 288,000 elementary and secondary students, found that in schools where SEL is integrated into daily instruction, students scored 11 percentile points higher on standardized tests compared to schools not using an SEL program (CASEL – Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning). In a five-year system-wide implementation of Safe & Caring Schools principals report that
negative behaviors decreased nearly 40 percent, daily infractions were greatly reduced, and there was a noticeable positive change in school culture.

Practical and Sustainable
Safe & Caring Schools responds to the need school leaders have for sustainable school improvement tools teachers can use in the classroom, instead of add-ons that crowd already busy schedules. SCS monthly themes and topics are literature based and integrated into academic instruction across the school year to reinforce positive school culture. The program establishes a common vocabulary that quickly helps make being a part of a safe  and caring school something easily understood and embraced by students and adults alike.

Benefits for Students and Parents
Educators report that creating a safe and caring school has tremendous support from parents. Data shows a large increase in parental engagement as SCS addresses parental concerns about climate, personal safety, and achievement in a practical way. The SCS approach complements and enhances the well being of students by promoting self-awareness, self-respect, integrity, and compassion to help them become productive citizens in their communities.

Safe & Caring Schools Tips
  • Add into your mission statement your intent to create a safe and caring school community for all children and adults.
  • Infuse social and emotional learning into the daily classroom instruction.
  • Model social and emotional skills as often as possible.
  • Create opportunities for students to practice their new skills.
  • Recognize students who use positive skills on a regular basis.
  • Enlist parental support to reinforce SCS skills and concepts at home.


Professional Development
Staff development and consultation is available with SCS author Katia Petersen, an experienced workshop leader and training expert. Contact her through or at (415) 474-1063 for a customized program.

Bye Bye Bullies
Bye, Bye Bullies is a live theatrical program that focuses on bullying prevention and character education for elementary students. The play is presented by The National Theatre for Children, a Minnesota company that is the nation’s largest in-school touring educational theatre company. Bye, Bye Bullies is simple to stage and offers students, teachers, and parents a 1-hour presentation of the play (geared to the age level) and workbook activities. In a spirit of fun, the program focuses on the following:
•    Identifying what a bully is
•    Teaching about empathy
•    Teaching the difference between kidding and teasing
•    Teaching how students can be everyday heroes

For information on how you could bring the program to your school or area, contact The National Theatre for Children through or at (800) 858-3999.

Mission: The Minnesota Elementary School Principals' Association is dedicated to promoting and improving education for children and youth, strengthening the role as educational leader for elementary and middle level principals, and collaborating with partners in education to assist in achieving these goals.

Leading schools toward excellence through the MESPA vision to be the premiere resource for preparing today's principals for tomorrow and a strong leading voice for public education.

Minnesota Elementary School Principals' Association
1667 North Snelling Avenue, St. Paul, MN 55108
651.999.7310     MN toll free 800.642.6807    
Fax: 651.999.7311     E-mail: