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Leading Equity

Mar 16, 2020

Soundhari Balaguru, PhD - Director of Social Emotional Learning & Mental Health

Soundhari Balaguru, PhD is a clinical psychologist who has worked with schools and districts/networks to build effective student support systems, which includes addressing the socio-emotional and mental health needs of their students, for 15 years.  Formerly at Boston Children’s Hospital/Harvard Medical School, she worked on-site in turnaround, exam, and charter schools, to build their capacities to close the racial/economic opportunity gap. As founding Director of Social-Emotional Learning & Mental Health at Caliber: ChangeMakers Academy (CMA), a diverse K-8 in Vallejo, CA, she is reimagining education with SEL and Restorative Practices.  She develops innovative and equitable circle curricula, systems, trainings, and leadership practices that facilitate growth of social-emotional competencies for students and staff. She is a proud member of a school team that is dedicated to validating and affirming student’s ethnic/cultural identities, providing a rigorous academic education, and promoting holistic social-emotional growth in their students. ‘Dr. Soundhari’ believes that a caring school community is one in which students, teachers, leaders, and families treat one another with empathy, accept that people will make mistakes, and support each other in becoming their best selves.    


Asha Canady - School Leader, Caliber ChangeMakers Academy

Asha is a Northern California native and was fortunate to return to the area after completing a Masters Degree at the University of Michigan in Education, Leadership and Policy. Asha has had a diverse career in education, including being a high school English teacher, a Fulbright Scholar in Athens, Greece and the Founding Middle-School English Teacher at Caliber: ChangeMakers Academy. Asha is currently the Upper School Principal of CMA whose mission is to equitably provide rigorous learning opportunities for historically underserved students.


Show Highlights

  • The relationship between Restorative Justice and Social-Emotional Learning
  • Integrating RJ and SEL into school
  • Examples of RJ and SEL working together
  • Some challenges with RJ and SEL


Connect with Soundhari


Connect with Asha


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