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Handle With Care

Putting the Research Into Action

A Closer Look at the Problem

In an average classroom, 80% of student will have experienced one or more Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs).

ACEs are traumatic events in childhood such as abuse, neglect, and other household dysfunction including the arrest of a parent, divorce, or substance abuse in the home. Research has shown a direct link between exposure to these events and serious health problems later in life such as cancer, obesity, and even risk of suicide.

Trauma and ACEs also affect children’s ability to learn. Prolonged stress from these events undermines their ability to focus, behave appropriately, and learn in school. It often leads to students falling behind, truancy, suspension or expulsion, dropping out, or involvement in the juvenile justice system.

Learn more about toxic stress.

But, there is hope!

The more ACEs a child experiences, the more their risk for poor health and academic outcomes. This risk can be mitigated, however, with appropriate supports and protective factors.

One of the most powerful protective factors to mitigate the negative effects of ACEs is a positive relationship with a trusted adult at school. Lifting Up helps your teams identify WHO needs that connection, WHEN they need it.

Learn more about the role of schools and protective factors here.

How can we help?

Lifting Up automates a model called Handle With Care (HWC), for the early identification of children impacted by trauma so schools can deploy targeted protective factors for early intervention and prevention.

The model was created and named by the West Virginia Center for Children’s Justice, and establishes a framework for communication from law enforcement to schools if a child is present at certain incident scenes.

In the original model, officers send a text, email, or electronic form to the school to give them a heads up the child might need to be “handled with care.”

We remove that burden from officers for increased equity and efficiency. They only need to complete their reports as normal- no check box, no new module.

What are ACEs?

According to the CDC, there are four types of Adverse Childhood Experiences. See the infographic below. For more information, visit the CDC ACEs Fact Sheet.

Types-of-ACEs-medium (1)CDC.png
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