Real Talk for Real Teachers with Dr. Becky Bailey and special guest Cassie Gerst

Episode Summary

10.2 million children in the United States participate in after school programs. The best after school programs are comprehensive, fostering the self-worth of each child, developing social skills, and promoting respect for cultural diversity. They also provide learning activities, quiet time, recreation, and developmentally appropriate activities that inspire problem-solving. These qualities closely align with Conscious Discipline, which can be implemented both during and after school.

Listen in as Dr. Becky Bailey discusses Conscious Discipline in after school programs with guest Cassie Gerst, who oversees after school programming in the Burlington Community School District. After implementing Conscious Discipline, Cassie’s after school programs saw an 89.5% reduction in office referrals, a dramatic decrease in suspensions and removals, and an increase in staff retention. Cassie explains her implementation process and offers tips for others who want to embed Conscious Discipline in their after school programs.

Essential Takeaways

  • The best after school programs are comprehensive and foster self-worth, develop social skills, promote respect for cultural diversity, and provide a combination of homework help/tutoring, quiet time, and physical activity. They also offer developmentally appropriate activities that inspire problem-solving.
  • Conscious Discipline states that all behavior is communication. Children are communicating to us that they are missing a skill.
  • Since Cassie oversees programs in several different buildings, she picked staff members from each building to attend the Conscious Discipline Summer Institute and form her Conscious Discipline Action Team (CDAT). In addition to developing training and professional development, the CDAT planned which rituals and structures they would implement in Year 1.
  • The after school programs that implemented Conscious Discipline saw an 89.5% reduction in office referrals. Suspensions and dismissals from the program decreased, while staff retention increased.
  • Cassie encourages other after school programs hoping to implement Conscious Discipline to create a plan for training and onboarding new staff, including shadowing and mentoring.
  • Cassie also recommends that you look at staff strengths and weaknesses and create professional development to meet their needs. How are they feeling? Where are they in their journey? What is needed in order for staff to be successful?

Important Links

Product Mentions

Show Outline

  • :20 What is Conscious Discipline?
  • 1:09 Introduction of topic: After school programs
  • 1:30 Qualities of the best after school programs
  • 2:55 Introduction of guest Cassie Gerst and her role
  • 6:01 Cassie’s introduction to Conscious Discipline
  • 7:55 Embedding Conscious Discipline into after school programs
  • 9:52 Data and outcomes
  • 13:05 Tips for other after school programs hoping to implement Conscious Discipline
  • 16:36 What’s Becky up to?
  • 17:02 What’s Becky celebrating?

Thank You for Listening

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On behalf of our Conscious Discipline family, we wish you well.