Introducing the ASCD Whole Child Network

Transform your school through the proven ASCD Whole Child approach

As an educator, you have a tough job ahead of you: Promote the long-term development and success of each and every student in your care. That's the ASCD Whole Child approach to education.

Be a part of ASCD's mission of educating the whole child by joining the ASCD Whole Child Network, a global network of schools focused on the same goals; engaged in the same processes; and with whose educators you can discuss issues, share insights, and exchange support.

Join the ASCD Whole Child Network Today!

Register today for the ASCD Whole Child Network(TM)

What Is the Whole Child Approach?

Promoting a whole child approach to education redefines a successful learner as one that is knowledgeable, emotionally and physically healthy, civically inspired, engaged in the arts, prepared for work and economic self-sufficiency, and ready for the world beyond formal schooling.

Using this framework moves us beyond a definition of success that is measured only by academic achievement and focuses on five tenets designed to measure how well your school is serving students:

  • Healthy: Each student enters school healthy and learns about and practices a healthy lifestyle.
  • Safe: Each student learns in an environment that is physically and emotionally safe for students and adults.
  • Engaged: Each student is actively engaged in learning and is connected to the school and broader community.
  • Supported: Each student has access to personalized learning and is supported by qualified, caring adults.
  • Challenged: Each student is challenged academically and prepared for success in college or further study and for employment and participation in a global environment.

Learn more about the ASCD Whole Child approach.

What Do You Get from the Whole Child Network?

Schools that join this free network receive access to the following:

  • ASCD Whole Child School Improvement Tool™: ASCD's online needs assessment tool based on a the ASCD Whole Child approach to education.
  • ASCD Whole Child School Improvement Tool report: A report specifically designed for whole child schools that details results down to the indicator level, highlighting key areas where the school is doing well and other areas that need additional supports.
  • ASCD Whole Child Network Guide: A dedicated guide that walks ASCD Whole Child Network schools through the report's results and helps with planning the school's professional development activities.
  • ASCD Action Planner: Designed for use in conjunction with the ASCD Whole Child Network Guide, the Action Planner allows schools to outline their yearly professional development and activities focused on a problem of practice.
  • ASCD Whole Child Network Continuum™: This continuum of 150 benchmarks is aligned to each Whole Child Tenet and Indicator spread across three levels from beginning through mastery.

In addition, schools can purchase a range of aligned ASCD resources and services including:

  • Access to ASCD Activate: ASCD's digital professional learning library.
  • Networking experiences through our Whole Child Network and ASCD's conferences, where you can share best practices.
  • Certification as a Whole Child Implementer School, Ambassador School, or School of Distinction.

Visit the FAQ to learn more.

Feedback from Our Pilot Program

  • The most valuable realization was that a whole child approach to education is about a school's philosophy, not a particular school program. Each decision we make about school policy or programs should be done with the whole child in mind, and that policies or programs that don't are off-target for the work of our school building."
    —Stacy Carpenter, School Counselor
  • The ASCD Whole Child approach provided a framework in which to organize, focus the work, change the culture, and begin the process of turning around the school. By considering the tenets and indicators from the whole child framework, we were able make intentional decisions for the benefit of our students and teachers."
    —Angela Hamilton, Assistant Principal
  • The whole child is about all achievement, not some achievement, and about the needs of the child in the present as they prepare for life in the future."
    —Andy Hargreaves, Professor Emeritus, Lynch School of Education at Boston College
  • There has been a noticeable difference in the school climate and culture after going through the whole child process. The expectations of the faculty are higher; the students feel safe in their environment; and there are multiple opportunities for faculty, staff, and students to participate in healthier activities and eating healthier meals. It allowed us as a faculty and staff to organize and identify the strengths and weaknesses in our current programs."
    —Mark Toole, Teacher