What trauma-informed care looks like

This article was originally published in The Notebook. In August 2020, The Notebook became Chalkbeat Philadelphia.

Trauma-informedNot trauma-informedRecognize trauma as an issue. Think in terms of “What happened to you.”Think in terms of “What’s wrong with you?”Act as a caregiver/supporter. Focus on collaboration. Avoid making the issue one of power or control. Pay constant attention to the student’s background and culture.Act as a rule-enforcer. Think in terms of compliance.Use objective, neutral language.Use labeling language: words and phrases like “manipulative,” “needy,” “attention-seeking.”Understand behavior as a coping mechanism.See behavior as intentionally provocative.

– Adapted from the federal Substance Abuse and Mental health Services Administration (SAMHSA) website.