Helping Students in Trauma and Poverty Be Successful

Home/Helping Students in Trauma and Poverty Be Successful

Summit : Louisville, KY

School : Ohio Avenue Elementary

District : Columbus City Schools

State : Ohio

Level : K-12

Team Lead : Jessica Bedra

Topics: School Climate, Whole Child

Ohio Avenue Elementary School teacher leader, Jessica Bedra, believes that Teacher Leadership means looking at a bigger picture and seeing how to make it better for everyone involved. It means taking action where action is needed. This Columbus City teacher and her team are taking action by helping students in trauma and poverty learn and achieve.

Problem and Solution

They took their challenge to Teach to Lead and began creating regulation stations and a system for using them. Students will be able to leave class and use stations such as rocking chairs, wall coloring, stationary bikes, and sensory walls to help them regulate. The goal is to have them return to class brain ready to learn and make connections, helping to close the achievement gap.


Since attending the summit, they have planned the stations, formed a community partnership to help create the stations, and secured almost $10,000 in grants. They submitted proposals for two additional grants and are working on two more. Their team completed a discipline flow chart so that the stations must be used before a student can be written up. They are now working on purchasing the materials for the stations and beginning to create them. In June they will present a training to their staff on how to use the stations, the system for releasing students, and the finalized discipline flow chart.

Teacher Leadership Tips

After attending the Teach to Lead conference, these teacher leaders are empowered to change things for their students. They know they don’t have to wait for someone in an office to address a need. Jessica and her team believe you should “take a risk and see what happens. If you really believe that this will benefit your students or staff your passion will shine through and people will want to help you.”

Interested in learning more about this project? Contact Jessica Bedra at