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Trauma Informed Educational Practice

A circle labeled Equity Centered Trauma Informed Care surrounds the interrelated concepts of TIEP.

Thompson, P., & Marsh, H. (2022). Centering equity: Trauma-informed principles and feminist practice. In P. Thompson & J. Carello (Eds.), Trauma-informed pedagogies: A guide for responding to crisis and inequality in higher education (pp. 15-33). Springer International Publishing.

Working Definition

Centering equity: Trauma-informed principles and feminist practice. (Thompson & Marsh, 2022)

Education equity is the process of ensuring that all students can access high quality education, that they are fully included in the school communities, that they are able to engage in meaningful and challenging academic work, and that they can do all of this in an environment that values them as people. (Venet, 2021)

Why It’s Important to Student Learning and Academic Success

  • Understanding historical context helps educators recognize the impact of historical trauma on students' lives and learning
  • Mitigate the risk of re-traumatization
  • Increased student engagement
  • Cultivate critical thinking and problem-solving skills
  • Improve learners’ sense of belonging in the classroom.
  • Inequity in schools can cause and worsen trauma.
  • Students can be exposed to trauma at school through experiences of bullying and harassment, police and zero tolerance policies, curriculum violence and racial trauma.

Classroom Tools

Building unconditional relationships (unconditional positive regard)

Make connections, respect boundaries.

Gonser, S. (2021). Addressing race and racism head-on in the classroom. Edutopia. 

Lo, L. (2022). 6 Ways to make teaching more culturally responsive. Edutopia. 

Medina, P. [TEDx Talks]. Let’s stop talking about diversity and start working towards equity [Video]. YouTube. 

Classroom Audit Materials

Turner Consulting Group (n.d.). Inclusive classroom self-assessment for educators. Turner Consulting Group. 

Four Proactive Priorities Reflection: Predictability, Flexibility, Connection & Empowerment (Venet, 2021, pp. 80)

Peer Observation: Equity review of classroom (Venet, 2021, pp. 94)

Theoretical and Evidence-Based Practices

Social Justice Theory (United Nations, 2006)

Asset-Based Frameworks (California Department of Education, 2022)

Educators in an equity-centered learning environment:

  • Are aware of and responsive to forms of privilege and oppression.
  • Select of culturally responsive materials representing diverse voices
  • Foster an environment where all learners respect one another’s diverse experiences and identities
  • Are aware of personal and disciplinary biases and how they impact teaching and learning
  • Recognize and respect the diverse cultural values of students
  • Understand and acknowledge historical injustices and their effects
  • Use correct pronouns

TIEP is antiracist and against all forms of oppression (Venet, 2021), Universal is not a one-size fits all: responsive supports for all. 

Required Institutional Supports for Success

  • Provide opportunities for faculty development on social justice principles
  • Develop your lens (Venet 2021)
  • Support teacher wellness, creating a culture of care, help the helper
  • Foster an institutional culture that promotes and advances diversity, equity and inclusion
  • Shift the Systems: Restorative justice practices; Adopt a Universal approach
  • Expand methods and frequency of gathering feedback about curricula | 503.943.7111 or 800.841.8261 | 5000 N. Willamette Blvd., Portland, OR 97203-5798
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