University of Vermont

The Center on Disability and Community Inclusion (CDCI)

BEST: Building Effective Support For Teaching Students With Behavioral Challenges

A person runningBEST/MTSS Summer Institute 2018

Strand I - FULL

Creating Trauma-Informed School Communities Fostering Resilience Through Essential Skill Building

Joelle van Lent


Dr. van Lent’s training is designed from current research on the key components and protective factors that foster resilience in children who are contending with a wide variety of stressors including developmental trauma, mental health challenges, intellectual and learning variations, developmental disabilities, and chronic adversity within their environment. Participants will learn specific strategies and interventions that will create intentional opportunities for the developmentof essential skills within the realms of emotional regulation, social competency, and executive functioning.  This training will highlight how participants can positively influence a child’s development and offer specific ideas to put into practice.  In an effort to also support the resilience of the educational provider, this training will address the risk factors and vulnerabilities for negative influence on those in helping professions.  This aspect of the training will highlight factors that promote compassion satisfaction and renewed commitment to self-care, connection, and health within a professional’s work life.
The goal of this training is to build competency and increased self-reliance within the school system for implementation of trauma informed approaches.  The training has an emphasis on offering relevant concepts and specific strategies that can be used universally within the classroom primarily through the use of already existing resources.

Training objectives:
    1.    Participants will learn about various forms of stress and current research relevant to fostering resilience in children.  The training will focus on the protective factors and key elements that improve a child’s ability to prevail in context of ongoing stressors of a wide variety.
    2.    Participants will explore the impact of chronic exposure to trauma and toxic stress on child development, specifically focusing on attachment capacity, neurological functioning, affect regulation, and executive functioning.
    3.    Participants will learn strategies and interventions that foster the development of essential skills that improve a child’s engagement and functioning.  The training focuses on the realms of relational health, emotional regulation, social competency, and executive functioning.  An emphasis is placed on the use of co-regulation as a tool to help de-escalate students and improve their ability to regulate.  Specific examples and modeling of such skill development will be included.
    4.    The participant will develop an understanding of the concepts of CompassionFatigue and Compassion Satisfaction, as well as increased awareness of the associated risk factors and environmental vulnerabilities.  The participant will be actively engaged in developing ideas for self-care and effective professional collaboration.

Who Should Attend:

Anyone is welcome!


Healthy Environments and Response to Trauma in Schools (HEARTS): A Whole-School, Multi-level, Prevention and Intervention Program for Creating Trauma-Informed, Safe and Supportive Schools. Joyce S. Dorado, Miriam Martinez, Laura E. McArthur, Talia Leibovitz February 2016, Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

National Scientific Council on the Developing Child. (2015). Supportive Relationships and Active Skill-Building Strengthen the Foundations of Resilience: Working Paper 13. 



Dr. Joelle van Lent is a licensed psychologist with over 20 years of experience working with children, families, and child serving agencies.  Dr. van Lent has expertise as a therapist, clinician, evaluator, consultant, and trainer.  Her work focuses on child and adolescent mental health, family therapy, trauma, and Autism Spectrum Disorder.  Dr. van Lent’s approach is geared toward fostering resilience and creating communities that support healthy development.  She is currently in private practice based in the northwestern part of Vermont and works across the state with schools and agencies.

Last modified June 12 2018 02:10 PM

Contact UVM © 2018 The University of Vermont - Burlington, VT 05405 - (802) 656-3131