Since early 2020, rates of clinically significant student anxiety & depression and educator burnout have risen significantly. To retain educators and protect student well-being, school leaders must proactively build supportive environments and ensure they're targeting the factors most closely linked with mental health. In this session, Nina Kumar, CEO of Authentic Connections, will explore findings from evidence-based surveys administered to over 70,000 students and 12,000 school adults across the country to identify the modifiable aspects of school life that have emerged as being most tied to student and educator well-being. Based on these findings, Nina will highlight areas of strength and areas of improvement commonly found across schools and provide best practices that leaders can use to maximize resilience and build consensus for making meaningful change.
Nina L. Kumar has published several peer-reviewed scientific articles on adolescent well-being, school climate, and using assessments to inform decision-making. Nina has been the lead presenter on workshops and lectures for many school communities, associations, and leading national education organizations. Additionally, Nina is well versed in the data being explored in this session, as she has spent extensive time analyzing results from the close to 200 schools included in the dataset.