One of the most important ways for school staff and administrators to provide a trauma-informed response to COVID-19 is
through active community collaboration. In order to better address the needs of students and families, it will be important
for each community to consider the level of collaboration between schools and other child and family serving systems or
agencies (e.g., health, mental health, child welfare, shelters, food banks, other supportive non-profits) to determine what
creative and relevant supports can be put into place. This is especially important, since it may be difficult for families to access needed services that were traditionally brokered through the school, and school staff may be fielding a flood of requests
without the availability of usual solutions to assist families.

Educators and school staff

Educators and school staff can consider the following strategies during this time to enhance collaboration with community

  • Identify needed services and supports that could benefit your students and learn how to access them during this time.
  • Work with your teams to compile a comprehensive list of needs to share with other staff and administrators.
  • Communicate with families as appropriate about resources and supports needed to help their child.


Administrators can consider the following strategies to enhance collaboration with community partners:

  • Connect with local child welfare agencies to determine if there are any special procedures for schools to use for report-
    ing during this time, and review these with staff.
  • Reach out to trauma-informed mental health agencies, including NCTSN members, to learn about services available to
    families, such as both telehealth services and in-clinic services to be accessed later.
  • Help educators and staff clarify their roles in relation to providing support to families with specialized needs students
    to minimize the likelihood of caregivers developing secondary traumatic stress.
  • Provide procedures for staff to connect families with food banks, shelters, financial assistance agencies, unemploy-
    ment offices, etc. to help reduce burden and confusion among staff.
  • Develop relationships with faith-based communities, recognizing that they may also be tremendous areas of physical
    and emotional support for families.
  • Promote a culture across educators and staff to support families as best they can while also making sure to care for