National Dropout Prevention Center Releases Online Courses in Trauma for Educators

Anderson, SC–The National Dropout Prevention Center has released five online courses and a series of Trauma-Skilled Schools Institutes to help educators better meet the needs of trauma-impacted students and to meet state and local training needs. Many states and local school districts are recommending or mandating trauma training and an efficient and cost-effective way to accomplish this training is needed.

The National Dropout Prevention Center (NDPC) provides training for educators in trauma’s impact on behavior and learning to address trauma-impacted students’ needs and to help ensure their success in school and in life. The Trauma-Skilled Schools Model training, developed by the National Dropout Prevention Center, meets a variety of professional development requirements and mandated trauma training for educators. Training in this model is currently underway in 18 school districts across 11 states. This training goes beyond “trauma-informed” and “trauma-sensitive” to specific actions for schools. This training is also a school safety measure because addressing the needs of trauma-impacted students significantly reduces the likelihood of violence and aggression.

Researchers estimate that more than 50% of today’s students have experienced some form of trauma significant enough to negatively impact school behavior and learning and that no matter the source or type of trauma, the negative implications for learning and behavior are similar. The National Dropout Prevention Center, a non-profit that has served as the nation’s leading source for research on dropout prevention and best practices for over thirty years, developed the Trauma-Skilled Schools Model to focus on the under-addressed root causes of many, if not most, dropout risk factors, school attendance issues, school behavior problems and low achievement levels. 

“We know that nationally fifteen percent of those students who begin ninth grade do not graduate with their cohorts,” said Dr. Sandy Addis, Director of the National Dropout Prevention Center. “We can safely say that most of these students have experienced significant trauma at some point. Yet we also know that some students who experience trauma succeed and even excel academically. What the Trauma-Skilled Schools Model has done is to examine the factors that lead to success and develop a model that can be replicated for all students.” The Trauma-Skilled Schools Model differs from other trauma training in that it focuses on more than knowledge about trauma and focuses on educator action steps and skills to help trauma-impacted students succeed and graduate.

Based on the three years of research by the National Dropout Prevention Center and early success of the Trauma-Skilled Schools Model, NDPC now offers Trauma-Skilled Schools Institutes for school districts, online courses for educators, and Trauma-Skilled Specialist Certification for individual educators. The online courses can each be completed in two or three hours, explore each step of the Trauma-Skilled Schools Model, and meet many trauma training mandates for educators.

“Students require educators to be more than “trauma-informed” or “trauma-sensitive’,” notes Dr. Bill Daggett, a longtime advocate for innovation in school practices. “Our nation’s graduation rate hovers at 84% and we believe that the impact of trauma is a root cause. We must examine this issue more closely and this training, particularly these new online courses, help educators to do just that.”

For additional information on the Trauma-Skilled Schools Model, on-line courses, and professional development opportunities, and Trauma-Skilled Specialist Certification, visit

About the National Dropout Prevention Center (NDPC)
The National Dropout Prevention Center, a division of Successful Practices Network, was begun in 1986 to serve as a clearinghouse on issues related to dropout prevention and to offer strategies designed to increase the graduation rate in America’s schools. NDPC is a well-established national resource for sharing solutions for student success. It does so through its clearinghouse function, active research and evaluation projects, publications, and through a variety of professional development activities. The organization’s website——is the nation’s leading resource in providing effective, research-based solutions to engaging students and reducing dropout. By promoting awareness of successful programs and policies related to dropout prevention, the NDPC impacts education from the local to the national level. 

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