“For almost a hundred years,” explains Jonathan Cohen, director of the Center for Social & Emotional Education (CSEE), “educators have appreciated the importance of school climate – the quality or character of school life. We can all remember childhood moments when we felt particularly safe (or unsafe) in school, when we felt particularly connected to a caring adult (or frighteningly alone), when we felt particularly engaged in meaningful learning (or not).

“However, school climate is larger than any one person’s experience. When people work together, a group process emerges that is bigger than any one person’s actions.”

To that end, the Five Freedoms Project shares CSEE’s and the National School Climate Council’s belief that a comprehensive assessment of school climate includes major spheres of school life, such as:

  • Safety
  • Relationships
  • Teaching and Learning
  • Physical Environment
  • Larger Organizational Patterns of Shared Behavior and Understanding

To learn more about school climate — including measures for comprehensive assessment — visit CSEE’s Web site.