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Making Social and Emotional Learning Programs Relevant for Latino Youth of Immigration: The Role of Cultural Adaptations

Sara Castro-Olivo, Jessica Furrer, Nicholas Yoder
Published: 25 November 2021
 by  Emerald

Abstract: Latino youth represent more than one quarter of the overall public school population in the United States. For decades, Latinos have been found to perform significantly lower than their peers in standardized academic and some social and emotional measures. A unique subpopulation of this ethnic group, Latino Youth of Immigration (LYOI), has historically been underrepresented in the research literature, specifically, attempting to identify effective interventions that align with their unique social, emotional, and academic needs. In this chapter, we describe the unique sociocultural risk and protective factors for this population. In addition, we provide a brief synthesis of the extant literature on the sociocultural factors that researchers and practitioners need to address in partnership with the LYOI community when developing and implementing preventative programs. We emphasize the unique impact culturally responsive social and emotional learning (SEL) can have in this population. In addition, we provide models and examples on how school-based interventions can be implemented in a transformative manner for this vulnerable population, highlighting implications for researchers and practitioners to better collaborate with the LYOI community.
Keywords: Latino Youth of Immigration / Acculturative stress / Perceived discrimination / Ethnic identity / Social and emotional learning / Culturally responsive SEL / Trauma-focused social and emotional learning

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