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Marshfield Clinic Health System Center for Community Health Advancement announces SEL-Life Tools grant recipients for the 2021-22 school year

​​​Aug. 11, 2021

MARSHFIELD – Today's children and youth must navigate a complex, academically competitive, and ever changing world. Overwhelming evidence demands that we complement the emphasis on academics with the expansion of social and emotional skills and competencies that are equally important for students to succeed in school and in life.

​To address these demands, Marshfield Clinic Health System Center for Community Health Advancement is supporting the implementation of its Social Emotional Learning (SEL) Life Tools program curriculum in 31 school and afterschool programs across Wisconsin.

“We are pleased to be supporting the SEL-Life Tools program in these school and afterschool programs and look forward to building a partnership in addressing social emotional learning of students," said Jay Shrader, vice president, Community Health & Wellness, Center for Community Health Advancement. 

Marshfield Clinic Health System child psychologists Dr. Michael Schulein and Dr. Kelsie-Marie Offenwanger developed the SEL curriculum, which is built from the foundation of therapeutic techniques and focuses on developing social emotional tools that youth can use to thrive in their day-to-day lives. 

The curriculum includes the Life Tools program, which is an eight-week course consisting of weekly one-hour group sessions conducted during afterschool hours facilitated by a school counselor, school social worker or an credentialed professional counselor for identified youth ages 7-14 experiencing social emotional and/or mental health difficulties. 

The Life Tools program starts with an intentional time for standalone social and emotional learning. Facilitators can then start to look for ways to authentically weave the tools into their day-to-day interactions at school, while students look for ways to integrate the tools across settings. Children and youth notice when teachers, school leaders, and family members have positive relationships with one another. This implicitly models the Life Tools for them and positively reinforces the tools being used.

“We recognize from human history and innovative research that success comes from academic knowledge, the ability to work with others, and a sense of belonging and safety," said Dr. Kelsie-Marie Offenwanger, child and adolescent psychologist, Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Health. “The Life Tools curriculum provides safe, collaborative and fun learning experiences to help children and youth develop their social and emotional skills."

Center for Community Health Advancement is supporting the implementation of the SEL-Life Tools program in the following schools and afterschool programs: 


Almond Bancroft School District
Cornell School District
Ladysmith Area School District​
Rothschild Elementary School, DC Everest School District
Superior High School, Superior School District
Spooner Area School District
Lake Holcombe School District
Riverview Elementary (A+ After School Program), Wautoma
Fall Creek Elementary School, Fall Creek School District 
Waupun Area School District
Pittsville School District
Alexander Middle School, Nekoosa School District
Chequamegon School District-North Campus
Lakeland Union High School, Minocqua 
Shell Lake School District
Weston Elementary School, DC Everest School District
Mountain Bay Elementary, DC Everest School District
Minocqua J1 School District
Columbus Catholic Schools, Marshfield
Phillips Elementary School, Phillips School District
Boys & Girls Club of Portage County
North Elementary School, Antigo School District
Stratford Elementary School, Stratford School District
Port Edwards Elementary School, Port Edwards School District
OWL Program - CLC Madison Elementary, Marshfield
West Elementary, Antigo School District 
Antigo Middle School, Antigo School District
Assumption Middle School, Wisconsin Rapids 
Lac du Flambeau School District
Riverside Elementary School, DC Everest School District
North Lakeland School District
Wisconsin Rapids School District



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