School Daze: Getting Ahead for the Upcoming 2021-22 School Year
I think we can all agree that this past school year was an unprecedented one for most parents/caregivers, students, and staff in the K-12 setting. Although you’re enjoying the much needed summer break and the pandemic craze has left us in a daze, we want to be prepared for what lies ahead in the upcoming school year. As we move into the 2021-22 school year, there is lots to consider from school supplies to managing the stress and anxiety of once again adjusting to a “new normal”. For some parents and students, it will be their first time returning to a brick and mortar setting. Some families have experienced significant loss during the pandemic which may include loss of a loved one, loss of employment/income, and loss of what was once considered “normal” for them. Empowherment would like to assist with this adjustment by providing resources and information to address some of these needs/concerns.
Families in Need of School Supplies
Empowhermen,t in collaboration with Pinellas County Schools, will be hosting a Back to School event for all Pinellas County families to obtain school supplies as well as other resources to help get prepared for the upcoming school year. It will also be an opportunity to connect with other families.
Tips for Managing Stress/Anxiety of Students
Actively listen to concerns of students and acknowledge openly with them that change is difficult and that you are there to support them.
Acknowledge that everyone has different levels of resilience and manages stress/anxiety differently.
Practice patience as many students have had less social interaction with others over the past year.
Establish consistent routines.
Seek out the support of school counselors, school psychologists, and school social workers to address the reteaching of important social skills such as problem solving, effective communication, cooperating with others, setting boundaries, establishing healthy relationships, asking for help when needed, etc.
Seek professional support for grief support/counseling (Contact 211 Pinellas).
Tips for managing stress/anxiety of adults (parents/caregivers/school staff)
Don’t be afraid to acknowledge that this has not only been a tough year for students, but also you, the adults who support students.
Take your time as you establish new routines, and identify those who can provide support.
Explore safe, healthy outlets for stress such as exercise, meditation, deep breathing exercises, listening to music, eating a balanced diet, etc.
Utilize 211 Pinellas for financial support and other community resources as needed.
Seek professional support for grief support/counseling (Contact 211 Pinellas)
Most importantly, when experiencing stress, anxiety, or any other challenge, remember that you don’t have to do it alone!