K-State College of Education Documentary being Distributed Nationally

Manhattan, Kan. — After a successful premiere on Kansas and Missouri public television stations, the latest Kansas State University’s College of Education documentary, “Becoming Trauma Responsive,” is headed nationwide thanks to a distribution partnership with KTWU, the Topeka public television station, and American Public Television.

In August, more than 250 public broadcast stations across the country will start airing the program. It will be available in all 50 states.

“Becoming Trauma Responsive” details the changes two schools in Kansas and a preschool in Missouri implemented to meet the social and emotional needs of their students and staff because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Topics explored in the film include teaching self-regulation, identifying the stress response system, creating an environment that helps students overcome stress, developing a tolerance for change and establishing self-care routines for educators and caregivers. These techniques were substantiated by trauma experts who have spent decades working in counseling, therapy and neuroscience.

“For years, educators have sought out resources to become more trauma-equipped, but the pandemic has truly awakened the need for immediate support,” said Debbie Mercer, dean of the College of Education. “Our sincerest hope is that this documentary — and the voices of professionals, some of whom are survivors of trauma themselves — provides direction for educators and caregivers, as well as inspires others to become teachers and school counselors.”

Additional partners in the film are The Children’s Place in Kansas City, Missouri; Foster Adopt Connect, serving foster families in Kansas and Missouri; Topeka Public Schools; and faculty at K-State, University of Missouri at Kansas City and Wichita State University.

“Investing in mental health is an investment in healthy communities,” said Tiffany Anderson, superintendent of the Topeka Public Schools. “We recognize that to truly support our mission, placing a priority on trauma-informed practices was critical. Our focus on social-emotional health has improved the lives of countless families across Topeka.”

Visit becomingtraumaresponsive.com for more information about the film, as well as free resources for educators, caregivers and parents.

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