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The Neuropsychology of Stress and Trauma: How to Develop a Trauma Informed School

By Steven G. Feifer, D.Ed., ABSNP

This workshop will explore the neural underpinnings of stress, trauma, and emotional dysfunction in children and its relative impact upon learning. Environmental deprivation, poverty, childhood abuse, witnessing violence, and parental neglect can impact both cognitive and social-emotional development in children. There will be a discussion on five steps that schools can take to become “trauma-informed”, in order to better meet the diverse needs of all learners. Schools can enhance emotional wellness through early prevention efforts, appropriate assessment and screening techniques, and an improved school climate to foster emotional growth for all children. Targeted assessment strategies, specific classroom accommodations, and key coping strategies will be presented for at-risk students.

  1. Discuss the prevalence of trauma and stress for school aged children, as well as the various sources from which trauma can occur.
  2. Explore key brain regions that are impacted when students experience trauma, and the subsequent effect on academic and social skills development.
  3. Review five essential steps toward the development of a “trauma informed” school.
  4. Review various trauma screening tools and specific assessment techniques in order to conduct a “trauma-informed” evaluation.
  5. Discuss specific classroom accommodations along with school-wide interventions, and key coping strategies to induce a more positive school climate for all students.

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Neuropsychology of Reading Disorders: From Assessment to Intervention

Neuropsychology of Writing Disorders: From Assessment to Intervention

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