In watercolor, two profiles face one another. The profile on the left is red and the one on the right is blue. Two thought bubbles connect in a wavy line across the top of the heads.

In the journey of education and growth, school and a supportive environment are like close companions. Together, these two components—being linked to the school and having a safe school environment—help students live fulfilling lives. They offer protection against risky behaviors, help improve grades, and enhance mental health and emotional well-being.

The Crucial Role of Parents and Families

Parents and families are key players in a child's development. They serve as the initial guides, helping children build skills to manage their emotions, form healthy relationships, and make responsible choices. When schools and families collaborate, they create an environment that fosters these skills both at home and in school.

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Promoting health and emotional well-being in schools

Schools employ various strategies to ensure the well-being of their students, including:

Building Relationships: Schools and parents set goals together to establish strong connections among peers and adults.

Parental Involvement: Encouraging families to participate actively in their child's academic and school life creates a supportive environment.

Effective Teaching Methods: Creating a positive learning atmosphere through proficient classroom management and teaching techniques enhances well-being.

Access to Support Services: Providing counseling, psychological, and social services assists students in coping with challenges.

Actions for Parents to Support Their Children

To nurture your child's well-being, consider the following steps:

Engage with the School: Participate in parent organizations such as PTA or PTO to contribute to improving well-being.

Maintain Open Communication: Regularly read school newsletters, attend conferences, and communicate with teachers to stay informed about your child's school life.

Implement Strategies at Home: Practice active listening, acknowledge your child's emotions, and focus on their strengths to foster a healthy environment.

Model Coping Skills: Demonstrate positive ways of dealing with stress, such as walking or deep breathing exercises.

Check in with your child: Ask questions to understand their feelings about school, address worries, and discuss daily experiences.

Monitor Your Child's Well-Being: Keep an eye on their moods, feelings, behaviors, and attitudes towards school. Discuss any changes with teachers or doctors if needed.

Establish Healthy Routines: Discuss sleep, exercise, nutrition, hydration, and screen time habits to promote overall health.

Encourage and Support: Stay calm, help your child recognize and manage emotions, emphasize their strengths, and express pride in their achievements.

Address Anxiety: Address worries about safety, uncertainty, and separation by listening, providing safety steps, and giving honest answers.

Seek Additional Support: Utilize school resources and connect with other families if more help is required.

Share Information: Inform teachers about your child's strengths, challenges, and ways they manage stress.

Challenges at Different Education Levels

K–12 Students: COVID-19 has magnified mental health concerns for K–12 students, leading to increased loneliness and worries. Collaborative efforts between schools and families are crucial.

College Students: Transitioning to college comes with mental health challenges. The pandemic has added stress, demanding enhanced mental health support and awareness.

School connectedness and a healthy, supportive environment form the pillars of a student's growth. Parents and schools working together create an atmosphere where students can thrive emotionally and academically. By fostering communication, providing guidance, and addressing challenges, families and schools can ensure the well-being of children and adolescents at every stage of their education.


Department of Education
Center for Disease Control and Prevention
National Education Association