• Article

Incorporating trauma-informed care into school-based programs

BACKGROUND: This article provides an overview of the rationale and process for incorporating trauma-informed approaches into US school-based programs, using school-based adolescent pregnancy prevention programs as an example.

METHODS: Research literature is reviewed on the prevalence and outcomes of childhood trauma, including the links between trauma and pregnancy. Information is then presented concerning the implementation of trauma-informed approaches in school settings, describing activities undertaken, barriers encountered, and outcomes achieved. Next, we describe the implications of this literature for school-based adolescent pregnancy prevention programs, outlining the reasons for including trauma-informed approaches in these programs, the prerequisites for doing so, and some examples of successful implementation.

RESULTS: Many children in our country experience trauma, placing them at increased risk of multiple health concerns including adolescent pregnancy. In response to this situation, some schools have successfully incorporated trauma-informed approaches into adolescent pregnancy prevention programs, as well as other programming.

CONCLUSIONS: Incorporating trauma-informed approaches into school settings, including school-based adolescent pregnancy prevention programs, is a viable and important way to address the multiple needs of traumatized children.


Martin, S. L., Ashley, O. S., White, L., Axelson, S., Clark, M., & Burrus, B. (2017). Incorporating trauma-informed care into school-based programs. Journal of School Health, 87(12), 958-967. https://doi.org/10.1111/josh.12568

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