According to the Collaborative for Academic Social and Emotional Learning (CASEL), Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) is “the process through which children and adults acquire the knowledge, attitudes and skills they need to recognize and manage their emotions, demonstrate caring and concern for others, establish positive relationships, make responsible decisions and handle challenging situations constructively.”

ICPS is a program that supports SEL in young children. Research on ICPS has demonstrated the effectiveness of the program in reducing impulsivity and improving students’ social skills and problem-solving skills. Research indicates social and emotional learning contributes to reductions in youth substance abuse (Botvin, Baker, Dusenbury, Botvin, & Diaz, 1995) and interpersonal violence (Grossman, Neckerman, Koepsell, Liu, Asher, & Beland, 1997) and is associated with improvements in mental health (Greenberg, Domitrovich, & Bumbarger, 2001; Durlak & Wells, 1997).

SEL can also support academic achievement. One meta-analysis found quality SEL programing to be associated with an 11-point increase in academic achievement test scores (Durlak, Weissberg, Dymnicki, Taylor, & Schellinger, 2011). Other studies have found the quality of students’ early peer relationships to be predictive of academic achievement in late elementary school (Buhs, Ladd, & Herald-Brown, 2010; Flook, Repetti, & Ullman, 2005) and social, emotional and decision-making skills at seventh grade to be predictive of high school achievement scores (Fleming, Haggerty, Catalano, Harachi, Mazza, & Gruman, 2005). These findings support the need to include quality SEL as a component of district-level and school-level plans for improving student achievement.

To assist schools interested in SEL, CASEL conducts regular reviews of school-based SEL programs. ICPS has been recognized as a CASEL SELect program since 2002. More Information