In this essay, authors Lawson, Caringi, Gottfried, Bride, and Hydon introduce the concept of trauma literacy, connecting it to students' trauma and educators' secondary traumatic stress (STS). Interactions with traumatized students is one cause of STS; others derive from other traumatic encounters in schools and communities. Undesirable effects of STS start with professional disengagement and declining performance, include spill-over effects into educators' personal lives, and, ultimately, may cause them to leave the profession. The authors contend that alongside trauma-informed pedagogies and mental health services for students, mechanisms are needed for STS prevention, early identification, and rapid response. To benefit from and advance this dual framework, educators need a trauma-informed literacy that enables self-care, facilitates and safeguards interactions with trauma-impacted students and colleagues, and paves the way for expanded school improvement models.

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