Launched in 2011-2012, Roots of Empathy has reached almost 1,000 children in the Oakland Unified School District (OUSD).
'Tiny Teachers' involved in the California pilot of Roots of Empathy were celebrated at the first ever Baby Celebration in California, June, 2012.
“If everyone had Roots of Empathy, there would [be] very few bullies. People would understand people. There would be friendship and kindness.”
- Grade 3 Student, Oakland
Watch Tony Smith's presentation to OUSD Principals and Teachers.
Tony Smith, OUSD Superintendent and Mary Gordon at the first ever California Baby Celebration, June 2012.
Tony Smith, Superintendent of the Oakland Unified School District (OUSD), spoke to OUSD principals and teachers at a Roots of Empathy Workshop in January 2013, on the value that Roots of Empathy is bringing to the comprehensive education they are offering to Oakland's children. Watch the presentation here.
Roots of Empathy is part of the Oakland Unified School District's social-emotional learning initiative in cooperation with the Collaborative for Academic, Social and Emotional Learning (CASEL), as part of the CASEL-NoVo Foundation's intensive Collaborating Districts Initiative, supporting large school districts in building capacity for high-quality, evidence-based programming to promote social and emotional learning in preschool through Grade 12.
Roman Krznaric of the Greater Good Science Center called Roots of Empathy “the world’s most effective empathy teaching program” and Edutopia has recommended Roots of Empathy as an effective, research-proven social and emotional learning program.
73% of teachers in California with Roots of Empathy programs in their classrooms, strongly agreed or agreed that as a result of the program, students were less verbally aggressive by the end of the school year.
Roots of Empathy programs in California are supported by The Einhorn Family Charitable Trust.