Embracing SESL to Create Caring and Inclusive Classrooms (VIRTUAL)

Do you wonder how to create a school culture that nurtures all students and teachers?

Does your school’s mission statement feel disconnected from the work that you do with students?

Are you looking for connections with colleagues who value Social Emotional and Spiritual Learning (SESL) and Disability Inclusion?

Addressing the social, emotional and spiritual well being of our students is necessary to help them increase their connectedness, their behavior and their academic achievements. In this course, we’ll go one step further and link social emotional and spiritual learning to our Jewish values. We invite educators of all backgrounds to engage in a deep exploration of what it means to create a truly inclusive educational setting for all learners. Sessions will include discussion and reflection using relevant texts, guest speakers, SESL tools and current best practices for addressing accommodations for students with disabilities. There will be opportunities to present and receive feedback from the group in order to deepen your understanding and implementation of the SESL competencies and inclusion standards.

Over the course of eight sessions (October–May), your team will have the opportunity to have a cohort experience, learn from experts and guest faculty in addition to opportunities for individualized coaching.


Second Wednesday of the month, October, 2021–May, 2022 (8 sessions)

October 13, 2021
November 10, 2021
December 8, 2021
January 12, 2022
February 9, 2022
March 9, 2022
April 13, 2022
May 11, 2022
June 8, 2022 (Make-up session in case we need to reschedule)

Time: 10:30–12:30pm PST
Location: Virtual on Zoom
$360 per team of 2-3 professionals.
Register By: Teaching the Whole Student is now full. If you are interested in learning more about this series or to be placed on the waitlist, please email liora@jewishlearning.works.

Intended Audience: Educators teaching in K–8 settings including supplemental programs, congregational schools, and day schools. Early childhood educators are welcome to attend along with colleagues from their organization in order to help establish and promote a cohesive educational program.

Participation is for teams of 2–3 professionals from the same organization. A team ideally will consist of one educator practitioner who is working in the classroom and 1–2 additional team members that are supporting the implementation of the mission of the organization and school. This could be the education or program director, clergy, or lay leader.

Please direct questions to liora@jewishlearning.works.

This program is highly subsidized thanks to the generous support of the Jewish Community Federation and Foundation’s donor advised funds and the Fineman, King, Kohn, Kravitz-Fisher and Sugarman families.

To arrange a cost adjustment, please email liora@jewishlearning.works.

Facilitator Bios

This series will be taught by Sandy Gold and Susan Morrel, leaders in the field of Social Emotional and Spiritual Learning, Disability Inclusion Services, and Jewish Education.

Sandy Gold brings over 30 years of professional educational experience to her current role at Gateways: Access to Jewish Education where she is the Director of Jewish Programs. She began her career in Jewish education at the Rashi School as both a classroom teacher and a learning specialist and has since worked as a special education consultant in religious school settings. Sandy taught for nine years at the college level teaching both undergraduates and post baccalaureate students working towards certification. Currently, Sandy  teaches in the graduate school of Special Education at Hebrew College and teaches for Framingham State’s on-line graduate program and their professional development program. Sandy holds a B.A. from Tufts University in Social Psychology, an MA in Early Childhood and Elementary Education from NYU and an M.Ed. in Special Education from Boston University.

Susan Morrel, MARE, RJE Susan Morrel is a Jewish educational leader with over 25 years of congregational education experience, as well as work in Jewish camps and organizations. She is the Senior Advisor and Director of Field Experiences in the Master of Education program at Hebrew College. In addition, Susan is a consultant for Gateways: Access to Jewish Education in which she coaches educators in providing special education support to enable students with diverse learning needs to succeed in Jewish learning and living. Susan is also a teacher-educator in Philosophical Inquiry in Jewish Education and Instructional Leadership who specializes in Social and Emotional Learning (SEL). Susan holds an Executive Master Degree in Religious Education from Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR).