SSSAS is intentional about providing students the knowledge and skills needed to navigate this anxious time.
As Election Day dawns, we will have lived through one of the most contentious election seasons in recent memory. Day-to-day life in the midst of the pandemic, demands for racial justice and equity, and economic uncertainty have attributed to higher levels of stress and anxiety. A few weeks ago the American Psychological Association published a study about a new source of stress—some have named Election Stress Disorder. This research shows that the 2020 Presidential Election is a source of significant stress for 68% of adults—regardless of political affiliation.
SSSAS has been very intentional about providing students, parents and faculty the knowledge and skills needed to navigate this anxious time. On October 21, the Upper School held an Assembly to review the Presidential Election process and to offer suggestions for how to navigate Election Day and the days and weeks following.
The video includes valuable apolitical information on:
- Being media wise, considering the source and its motivations
- How to live as a community with our deepest differences
- Strategies to employ within a community
- Creating safe and brave spaces in the community
- Focus on empathy for everyone in the community - even those with differing perspectives
- Be intentional about using community norms and practicing dialogue skills
- De-escalate conflict by pivoting toward the complexity of issues
- What happens to our brains when we are stressed and our beliefs are challenged
- How we can come from a place of care in our reactions to one another and practicing self-care
- Deep breathing: 4-5 deep slow breaths
- Grounding: planting your feet firmly on the ground
- Exercising: Boost the feel-good endorphins
- Resourcing: Using an image or words to ground you and bring you back to the present moment
- Connecting with a friend, colleague, counselor, chaplain
- Election 2020 Resources compiled by Lower School Librarian and Interdisciplinary Coordinator Julie Esanu
- Teaching Tolerance
- Self-Study on Episcopal Identity (National Association of Episcopal Schools)
- First Amendment - Free Speech (Freedom Forum Institute)
- Civic Engagement (Harvard Graduate School of Education)