Safe and supportive schools

  • Hazel Dell classroom
  • Safe and supportive school

What is a safe and supportive school?

VPS is dedicated to creating a more inviting, culturally respectful and emotionally safe place for all students to learn. This safe learning environment takes work to create, maintain and repair when needed. An intentional focus on a positive culture and climate amongst students and staff is a priority. Here are some of the methods we use to achieve safe and supportive school environments.

Why are essential skills important for students to learn?

We teach students, through lessons and modeling, how to effectively interact with other students as well as adults. This includes the capacity to understand feelings. From self-awareness to responsible decision-making, the skills that students learn are important not only in a school setting, but critical for future success.

How do we help teachers and staff?

Safe and supportive instructional coaches support the implementation of school-wide and classroom systems that focus on:

  • Data – to monitor implementation and impact
  • Fidelity – supporting staff in being completely faithful to their systems
  • High-level practices – eight practices that are proven to yield strong academic and behavioral growth
The foundation of restorative practices is establishing, maintaining and repairing relationships in a safe and supportive school environment in order to create a sense of belonging.

However, harm and conflict will still occur in our school communities, and when they do the aim of the restorative approach is to respond in a meaningful way that meets the needs of the person harmed, the person who did the harm and the community.

We monitor all students and provide efficient, effective and targeted support when needed. The supports include academic as well as social emotional learning.

  • Tier I supports: The first tier establishes supports for all students. Buildings create a predictable and consistent community for all through clear and consistent routines and expectations, effective lessons, relationship building and social emotional and academic learning.
  • Tier II supports: Provide low-level supports for groups of students, within or outside the classroom.
  • Tier III supports: Are intensive, targeted support for individual students designed by a building team with student-centered focus.

How do we empower students to prevent bullying behavior?

Bullying prevention allows teachers and staff to create and sustain a positive school climate and culture, while providing students with leadership opportunities that contribute to the potential of all students in their school. Our staff draw from research-based practices to teach both students and staff how to recognize, refuse and report bullying while improving the quality of our school environment.

Report bullying, harassment, safety threats and/or intimidation