Guadalupe Centers High School is an urban, charter high school located just east of

downtown Kansas City, MO. The high school is part of a larger network of Guadalupe

Centers, which was originally created in 1919 in response to the needs of the growing

Mexican immigrant community in Kansas City. Since Mexican children were not allowed

into certain schools at that time, Guadalupe Centers created a volunteer school for

these children. According to the National Register for Historic Places, the Guadalupe

Centers is the “longest continuously operating agency serving latinos in the United

States.” Today, 90% of Guadalupe Centers High School is Latinx and 95% qualify for free

and reduced price lunch.

Banneker Elementary is an urban public elementary school within the Kansas City Public

School district and serves Kindergarten through 6th grade. It is named after Benjamin

Banneker who was an “outstanding scientist, astronomer, mathematician, and surveyor

who lived during colonial times…[and] was one of the leaders of his time in the use of

technology and was a driving force in the area of human rights.” Banneker Elementary

opened in 1990 and serves 420 students today, representing 57% black students and

28% Latinx students. All students qualify for free and reduced price lunch.

The problem identified by teachers at both Guadalupe Centers High School and

Banneker Elementary was that teachers do not have effective resources to identify

students in need of trauma-sensitive support. Teachers need a way to proactively and

systematically help all students manage their social-emotional needs and to share

strategies with each other to support students who have experienced traumatic events.

At Guadalupe, Mrs. Sarah Hellhake, an Electives teacher, led the pilot initiative. At

Banneker, Ashten Link, a Kindergarten teacher, and Cristian Marquez, a trauma

sensitive school clinician at KCPS worked together to implement the pilot of Emote.


Emote is a platform that continually collects and analyzes SEL (social-emotional

learning) data to deliver insights to the right person at the right time—empowering

schools to deliver proactive support to 100% of students with existing staff. Emote was

founded by Julian Golder. Through real-time insight recorded by teachers for each


student, teachers can respond earlier to students’ emotional needs and behavioral

escalations in a proactive way. Emote promotes collaborative support by allowing

teachers to share intervention strategies and insights for students across different

classrooms. Emote can also be used to support whole-child trends.

Key Outcomes

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Mid-level interventions

reduced 76%

Figure 2 illustrates the average number of Buddy Room interventions over the pilot

period per user group. Recall that Buddy Room interventions are when a teacher moves

a student to a different classroom for the remainder of a class period and is considered a

mid-level, somewhat reactive intervention. Consistent with expectations, Emote users

reduced the number of Buddy Room interventions they used over the course of the pilot

period. In the first week, Emote teachers were averaging about 17 Buddy Room

interventions a week and by the last week of the pilot period, they were averaging just

four Buddy Room interventions, which reflects a 76% decrease that is statistically

significant (using a paired t-test). Conversely, and as expected, the non-Emote users did

not change the number of Buddy Room interventions they used. The average change

between Emote users and non-users is also statistically significant.

86% fewer low-level interventions

5x as many students supported

In Figure 1, the average number of Safe Seat Interventions over the pilot period per user group at Guadalupe are illustrated. Safe Seat interventions are when a teacher moves a student to a different seat within the current classroom and is considered a low-level. For the seven Emote users, they reduced the number of safe seat interventions they used. In the first week, the Emote teachers used seven safe seat interventions, on average, and steadily decreased the number of safe seat interventions they used over the 13-week pilot period. For the six non-Emote users, in the first week, the teachers used only one safe seat intervention, on average, and maintained that level

over time.

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26% reduction in teacher stress

Emote users did report less stress

over the course of the pilot period than non-Emote users.

Figure 6 illustrates the change in the average-level teacher-reported stress over the

pilot period at Guadalupe by user group. As expected, Emote users did report less stress

over the pilot period, on average. At the beginning of the pilot period, Emote users

reported an average-level of 3.4 (on a scale of 1-5) and by the end of the pilot period,

they reported an average-level of 2.5, which reflects a 26% decline in their level of

stress, which was a statistically significant decline (using a paired t-test). Conversely,

teachers that did not use Emote did not experience a statistically significant decline in

their reported level of stress. In this case, both groups of teachers had relatively similar

levels of stress to begin with, suggesting a relatively good comparison.

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