Zeta Charter Schools introduce weekly safe spaces for students to grow emotionally

Zeta Charter Schools are prioritizing social and emotional learning between students and staff with weekly safe spaces in the classroom. 
The program, called Circle, gives 30 minutes every Wednesday for students and teachers to share and support each other. It starts with meditation to help students get in the right mindset before staff checks in with each student.  
“It gives them a safe space to explore how they are feeling, why they are feeling that way, and it also builds community if students hear how their classmates are feeling,” said Andrew Noe, principal of Zeta South Bronx Charter School.  
Teachers record how each kid says they’re feeling in the moment, then check back with certain students asking if they are comfortable opening up about why they feel that way. 
“Every student that shares is being vulnerable, and it’s our job to validate their feelings,” said Noe. “Any conversations that need to happen or any concerns brought up are addressed afterwards.” 
Circle aims to build self-awareness, empathy and self-management coping skills. Noe says staff members participate in Circle bi-weekly as well to help build a more emotionally intelligent school community.