‘Are the children well?’

Sept. 21, 2014

Thomas writes:

“This question is part of an ancient African greeting custom, and it is the title of a Child Trends Report funded by the Robert Woods Johnson Foundation. The report presents recommendations for promoting the mental wellbeing of the Nation’s Young People.

Table 1 from the report
Table 1 from the report

“As one who stands for children, I must say, ‘Children are not well.’

“The children are not well as long as policymakers and educators embrace ‘zero tolerance’ approaches as opposed to ‘positive behavioral interventions and supports’ as disciplinary measures.

“The children are not well as long as the adults in their lives are not well. Children thrive in loving community.

“Positive, supportive relationships help children buffer adverse experiences. Singing is one way of building community and enhancing relationships.”

Download the report here.