Collaboration with Families & Communities with a Trauma Lens

Collaboration with Families & Communities with a Trauma Lens

0.50 USBE Credit
Trauma-informed schools build resilience by preparing schools to be responsive to the needs of their students with seamless, accessible social, behavioral, and emotional support involving all school community members, as well as access to evidence-based, developmentally appropriate, child and family services. This requires the engagement of all administrators, educators, and staff, and other key stakeholders as they are each involved with the daily life of students who have experienced trauma and loss.


To earn this 0.5 USBE credit microcredential you will collect and submit two evidence items demonstrating your effective and ongoing collaboration with families and communities to support trauma-informed practices. You will also complete a short written or video reflective analysis.


You will be charged $20 by the badge provider. You'll be charged at the point you submit your badge for final review.


Intensive trauma-informed school-based individual and family interventions should include consultation with school staff and wrap-around services.


Trauma: An event, series of events, or set of circumstances that is experienced by an individual as physically or emotionally harmful or life threatening and that has lasting adverse effects on the individual’s functioning and mental, social, emotional, or spiritual well-being.

Trauma-Informed Practices: Research-based practices that have been proven to be supportive of individuals experiencing trauma or toxic stress, which can be implemented in organizations.

Multidisciplinary Team: A team comprises a range of professionals from different organizations, working together to deliver comprehensive support for students.

Cultural Responsiveness: The ability to learn from and relate respectfully with people of your own culture as well as those from other cultures.

Key Partners : School Community (Administration, teachers, school-based mental health personnel (e.g., school counselors, school psychologists, school social workers), coaches, nurses), Community Mental Health Organizations, Law Enforcement, Youth Development Organizations, Advocacy Groups (e.g., LGBTQ), Families


Case 1

Crestview Middle School has an effective Multi-tiered System of Supports (MTSS) process within their school. One of their students, Stephanie has been receiving support through Tier 2 and now Tier 3 interventions due to some emotional and behavioral concerns of her teachers. Stephanie is from the Piute tribe and has lived on a reservation most of her life. The data reviewed by the MTSS team indicates that Stephanie has not shown much improvement through the school-based interventions, and that she may need some community-based support. When the team makes this determination, they begin to work with community partners to coordinate resources and further support for Stephanie.

Case 2

Over the last few years, Kirkwood School District has had an influx of students from a variety of cultural backgrounds. The culture of many of these students was not represented by the teachers, administration, and other staff within the district. Many of these students also came from situations in which they had experienced trauma. Teachers expressed difficulty understanding how to support some of the unique needs of these students even though they did their best to understand these students and their cultural background. The leadership of Kirkwood School District decided that they needed to start collaborating with community organizations to better support these students. They developed a multidisciplinary team, which included school personnel, community mental health organizations, law enforcement, youth development organizations, advocacy groups, and parents. This team currently meets monthly to discuss the community issues which face their students. These discussions include how to combat the trauma students are experiencing, and how to create more equitable and culturally responsive systems both in the school and in the community as a whole.


Video: Submit a 5-10 minute video demonstrating an action plan to build relationships with key community partners. This video should include how trauma-informed practices are incorporated into your plan. Videos could include an interview(s) with key community partner(s), a community meeting, a school meeting with the involvement of community partner, or any other video that demonstrates the use of trauma-informed practices and collaboration with community partners.

Video submissions should follow all relevant district/charter and FERPA guidelines.

Student Work: Submit a work sample which exhibits how you are incorporating trauma-informed practices into your collaboration with families and communities. This evidence could include an agenda or notes (including titles of individuals represented at the meeting) from a meeting with community partners (e.g., Community Coalition, Community Council, Student Support Teams).

Learner work sample submissions should follow all relevant district/charter and FERPA guidelines.

Lesson Plan: Submit a lesson plan which exhibits how you are collaborating with the community from a trauma lens in your classroom or school (e.g, guest presentation from a prevention specialist or other community partner addressing trauma, QPR, mental health, and/or drug and substance abuse). Lesson plans must include learning activities, information related to the impacts of trauma, and a demonstration of the collaboration with the community partner(s).

Survey Results: Create a stakeholder survey to assess the relationship between the school and stakeholder (community partner). The survey should include questions related to the quality of the relationship, the quality and effectiveness of communication between the school and community partner, how services may be streamlined, and how services may be expanded. Evidence must include the stakeholder survey, data from at least five different community partners, and an analysis of how this data will inform future practices.

Submissions must maintain the confidentiality of the community partners in the data and analysis.

Testimonial: Submit at least three testimonials (e.g., video, written response, letter of recommendation) showing how the multidisciplinary team collaboration with parents, community members, and other stakeholders impacts student outcomes. At least one testimonial must come from a community member or parent.

Other: Submit coordination and/or collaboration with community partners to increase trauma awareness and practices. (e.g., Mental Health Screening Night, small group counseling services [Why Try], individual counseling services, parent nights).

Submit a one-page or more description of how you are collaborating with community partners to increase trauma awareness, mental health awareness, and trauma-informed practices with your school personnel and with community members. Evidence of collaboration may include: a mental health screening night, small group counseling services (e.g., Why Try), individual counseling services, and/or parent nights.

Candidates are required to make 2 evidence submission(s).

Review Criteria

Criterion 1: Evidence demonstrates that the applicant is aware of community resources available, and connects students, staff, and/or families to these resources. This connection may be through inviting community partners into the classroom or school and/or providing a community resource list so that the resources can be accessed by the student, staff, and/or family.

Criterion 2: Evidence demonstrates that community partnerships are aligned with school & local education agency (LEA) goals and priorities and trauma-informed practices, and that these partnerships improve student outcomes.

Criterion 3: Evidence demonstrates that the applicant is responsive to the unique needs of their diverse community by ensuring that each cultural group within their classroom and/or school are represented in these community partnerships.


  1. Describe the efforts made by your school or LEA to provide access to community resources.

  2. Explain what you are doing to strategically increase collaboration with families and your community.

  3. Give two examples of how you integrate trauma-informed practices and cultural competence to aid in your collaboration with your community, faith-based organization, families, or other community organizations.

Review Criteria

Criterion 1: Reflection demonstrates that the educator understands the value of community & family relationships.

Criterion 2: Reflections include mindset shifts and evidence-based practices that demonstrate the educator is collaborating with families & the community with a trauma-informed lens.

Criterion 3: Reflections should describe how the educator’s trauma-informed practices are culturally responsive, and have impacted their classroom, school, and community.


Building Trauma-Sensitive Schools Handout Packet
From National Center on Safe Supportive Learning Environments

Creating Healing School Communities: School-Based Interventions for Students Exposed to Trauma (Concise Guides on Trauma Care)
School systems are pressured to raise the level of academic achievement, but children who are exposed to trauma often bring a complicated set of needs to the classroom that can impact their willingness to learn, their cognitive function, their ability to form lasting relationships, and even their physical health. For school mental health providers, it can be overwhelming to find the best ways to support students who have experienced trauma and stress: What are the best ways to, understand and assist these vulnerable children?

School and Community Partnerships to Promote Trauma Sensitive Schools
This resource provides information on how to engage the community in promoting trauma-sensitive schools.

School-Community Collaboration to Address the Impact of Trauma and Build Resilience: A Public Health Approach
From Center for Childhood Resilience

The National Child Traumatic Stress Network
Our mission is to raise the standard of care and improve access to services for traumatized children, their families and communities throughout the United States.

Trauma Informed Practices in Schools: Considerations for Educators
This webinar is part of the California PBIS Coalition (CPC) webinar series. "Trauma Informed Practices in Schools: Considerations for Educators" will support educators in understanding the impact of trauma on students and how they can integrate strategies into the PBIS Framework.

USBE Trauma-Informed Professional Learning Modules
The Utah State Board of Education’s Trauma-Informed Learning Modules are available through Canvas and are designed to help participants develop the knowledge and skills necessary to become trauma-informed and trauma-aware.


Ileana Morocatalan
Ileana Morocatalan
Dustin Shakespear
Dustin Shakespear


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