Youngstown Schools focusing on new method of teaching

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WYTV) – The start of the 2017 school year is just days away for Youngstown City Schools students, and it will be the chance for CEO Krish Mohip to deploy plans he spent last year building.

At the center of his new plan is social and emotional learning (SEL) — a new method of teaching.

“I would argue that we haven’t been all that successful, and we need to try something different,” he said. “It is a switch from what the Youngstown City Schools is used to.”

To help prepare, teachers in the school district have spent the past seven days in training.

Timothy Shriver led Friday’s training seminar by talking about social and emotional learning — a way for teachers to help students deal with other conflicts in their lives. It takes into account stress management, problem-solving and coping skills.

Shriver, the chairman of the Special Olympics, is a leading educator focusing on the social and emotional factors in learning. He said social and emotional learning leads to better academics, better test scores and better students.

“This is not a strategy for coddling children or reducing the rigor of the academic world. It’s, in fact, a strategy for challenging children and increasing the rigor of academic instruction,” he said.

CEO Krish Mohip said the strategy was started last year and will be in all the classrooms when school starts.

“It is a switch from what Youngstown City Schools is used to doing, but this isn’t anything new. Across the country in some of the most progressive and achieving schools in urban settings are using social emotional learning as one of the mechanisms to increase student achievement,” he said.

Youngstown students come back to class on September 5.