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The 2021 Third Thursday webinar series, which will run January through June and is free to attend, will educate those new to the bullying prevention field and sharpen the skills of those who are experienced in this vital area. Webinars will cover essential topics including student safety and well-being skills, social-emotional wellness, cyberspace, and more.

Third Thursday webinars are approved for Olweus Bullying Prevention Program Trainer recertification, Act 48 and NASW credits.

This high quality learning series is presented in collaboration with the Pennsylvania Department of Education, Safe and Humane Schools Institute on Family and Neighborhood Life Clemson University, and the Capital Area Intermediate Unit.

Bullying Prevention and Social-Emotional Learning: What is One Without the Other?

Thursday, March 18, 2021, from 3 to 4:30 p.m. EST

Both bullying prevention and social emotional learning (SEL) programs can result in positive outcomes for students. However, research suggests that SEL programming alone is not a best practice for bullying prevention but can help when both are integrated into a schoolwide prevention approach. Effective bullying prevention requires a multicomponent approach including classroom-level prevention where SEL instruction takes place. Thus, within bullying prevention efforts, SEL plays an important role and within SEL instruction, an intentional focus on bullying prevention is critical for student well-being. Both are essential for building a positive climate whether in traditional or virtual schools.

The Olweus Bullying Prevention Program is proven to reduce bullying in schools and it also provides a framework for an effective, comprehensive approach to SEL. Presenters from the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program will share research on the relationship between SEL and bullying prevention and discuss how understanding the connection can contribute to a welcoming, safe learning environment. Specific strategies for strengthening SEL skills, reducing bullying, and incorporating both for seamless implementation will be presented.


Jan Urbanski, Ed.D., Director, Safe and Humane Schools, Clemson University

June Jenkins, M.Ed., Training Coordinator, Safe and Humane Schools, Clemson University


Bullying as a Traumatic Experience

Thursday, April 15, 2021, from 3 to 4:30 p.m. EST

Registration will be available soon.

Research continues to support negative outcomes in adulthood related to mental and relational health for children who have experienced trauma. In this webinar, Pennsylvania’s trauma-informed principles will be discussed as a framework for moving toward the development of trauma-informed systems. Part of this journey involves addressing childhood experiences through a trauma-informed lens. In terms of bullying, this means we need to identify bullying as a type of school violence and understand it as a type of traumatic experience for students and staff. This presentation will focus on identifying trauma, signs of trauma exposure in students, and how adults can use trauma-informed principles to address exposure to trauma.


Dana Milakovic, Psy.D., Mental Health/Alcohol and Other Drugs Specialist, Office for Safe Schools, Pennsylvania Department of Education

Being Safe, Kind and Respectful Online: What Educators Need to Know

Thursday, May 20, 2021, from 3 to 4:30 p.m. EST

Registration will be available soon.

In this era of digital connection and communication, educators and students are facing many challenges such as increased time spent online at younger ages. This interactive presentation will explore some of the complexities of educating, supporting and connecting with youth in today’s world. The presenters will navigate the areas of cyberbullying, online safety and digital citizenship. Working in a multi-tiered system of support framework and focusing on the social emotional needs of students, the presentation will provide practical strategies and usable resources for primary and secondary educators.


Mary Dolan, Bullying Prevention Consultant, Office for Safe Schools, Pennsylvania Department of Education

Leah Galkowski, Safe Schools Coordinator, Center for Schools and Communities

Michelle Gwinn Nutter, Education and Outreach Program Manager, Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General