Supporting our mission of educating the whole child, Stratford Friends School employs a full-time school psychologist. Michelle Gagliano is a Pennsylvania Certified School Psychologist, a licensed psychologist, and biofeedback certified. She has extensive clinical experience working in schools, outpatient centers, and residential facilities. In addition to teaching S.T.E.P.S. class, Michelle works with teams and individual students to strengthen their social and emotional skills.
S.T.E.P.S. (Self, Teamwork, Emotions, Peer Relationships, Skills)
Developed by Stratford Friends School and taught by our school psychologist, S.T.E.P.S. is a curriculum that focuses on building and strengthening students’ social-emotional balance. Aligned with our mission of teaching the whole student and celebrating students’ strengths, every student participates in S.T.E.P.S. class.
Meeting students at their developmental level, S.T.E.P.S. goals include, increasing self awareness, developing self-advocacy skills, and respecting and recognizing the feelings and perspectives of others. In addition, students learn: social pragmatic skills; skills for making and keeping friends; specific problem-solving strategies; and, self-management and self-regulation skills. Students also work on specific individual goals, monitoring and discussing their progress throughout the year.
Through structured and guided activities, cooperative games, role playing, problem-solving scenarios, stories, and discussions, students learn and practice these skills in class with the goal of generalizing their learning to real-life situations. The S.T.E.P.S. program helps students become problem solvers equipped to deal responsibly with daily academic and social challenges both inside and outside of school.