A Peaceful Los Angeles: Developing the Hearts and Minds of Our Future Leaders

Winning submission by smrossley

About Your Application

Organization(s) name(s):

Citizens of the World Charter Schools, Los Angeles

Organization(s) website(s):


Organization(s) twitter handle(s):


Organization(s) facebook handle(s):


Describe Your Organization(s)

Non-profit organization

For-profit organization


Other (please specify below):

In one sentence, please describe what your organization does.


Citizens of the World Charter Schools, Los Angeles (CWC LA) is a non-profit organization that operates three highly diverse, academically challenging, and community-based public charter currently schools serving 1,300 students in grades TK-6.

In one to three sentences, please describe your proposal.


In order to fulfill our mission, Citizens of the World seeks to construct a rich, comprehensive social-emotional learning (SEL) program, as we believe self-regulation and social connection are essential components of every child’s development. Including SEL in everyday instruction allows for deeper, longer-term learning to occur. Ultimately, we envision that students who have built strong social-emotional competencies will become better citizens of our complex, diverse, and ever-changing world.

Where will you be working? Please be specific (e.g. Third Street Middle School; Boyle Heights; LA County).

Central LA

East LA

San Gabriel Valley

San Fernando Valley

South LA


South Bay

Antelope Valley

County of Los Angeles (countywide)

City of Los Angeles (citywide)


Other (please specify below):

e.g. Third Street Middle School; Boyle Heights; LA County:

Diverse communities throughout LA including Hollywood, Silver Lake, and Mar Vista

How do you plan to use these resources to make change? (check all that apply)

Conduct research

Engage residents and stakeholders

Implement a pilot or new project

Expand a pilot or program

Mobilize for systems change

Advocate with policymakers and leaders

Implement and track policy

Other (please specify below):


Impact social change (by developing citizens who will improve individual and group dynamics in our diverse society)

How will your proposal improve the following “Learn” metrics? (check all that apply)

Percentage of children enrolled in early education programs

Percentage of community college students completing a certificate, degree, or transfer-related program in six years

Youth unemployment and underemployment

District-wide graduation rates

HS student proficiency in English & Language Arts and Math

Academic Performance Index* scores

College matriculation rates

Student education pipeline (an integrated network of pre-schools, K-12 institutions, and higher education systems that prepares students for seamless transitions between high school, higher education institutions, and the workforce) (Dream Metric)

Suspension and expulsion rates (Dream Metric)

Truancy rates in elementary and middle schools (Dream Metric)

Students perceived sense of safety at and on the way to school (Dream Metric)

Describe in greater detail how you will make LA the best place to learn.


As one of the largest, most diverse cities in the world, Los Angeles has endured significant inter-group conflict and civil unrest. Furthermore, our city's schools have struggled to prepare students for academic and societal success. CWC LA intends to make Los Angeles a better place to learn, connect, and live by cultivating social-emotional health in our students and by training our next generation of citizens to work together productively.

CWC believes social-emotional learning to be as integral to an excellent education as traditional academic subjects and, moreover, views it as necessary for the world in which we live. SEL involves both learning about oneself, in the form of self-awareness and self-management, and others, in the form of social awareness, empathy, compassion and collaboration.

CWC's model focuses on two broad aspects of social-emotional learning: 1) comprehension and 2) execution. Social-emotional comprehension pertains to the mental processes involved in encoding, interpreting, and reasoning about social and emotional information, and in controlling one’s thoughts and emotions. Examples include emotion recognition, perspective taking, social problem solving, and self-control. Social-emotional execution involves the behaviors expressed in social interactions that are designed to achieve social goals. These pro-social behaviors include the formation of friendships and social connections, and the reduction/resolution of social conflicts.

Social-emotional learning is highly consequential with positive impacts seen across behavioral, academic, mental health and social domains. According to a meta-analysis of school-based SEL programs conducted by Durlak, et all (2011), SEL programs “significantly improve students’ skills, attitudes, and behaviors”. In fact, strong SEL leads to better academic outcomes, relationships, participation in school, mental health and behavioral outcomes, and social acceptance.

Already, CWC LA's schools have experienced these benefits firsthand. As we expand our region's SEL program across our three diverse schools, we anticipate we will help move the needle on key education metrics for Los Angeles including: test scores, school safety, high school graduation, truancy, suspensions/expulsions, and ultimately college completion rates. We will also impact our students beyond school, with positive effects in resilience, mental health, social connection, safety and embracing diversity.

Please explain how you will evaluate your work.


CWC LA evaluates our work across three core program elements: academic excellence, diversity, and community. SEL is imbedded in each of these elements and helps us drive toward general mission fulfillment. Therefore, we will look at comprehensive measures such as academic achievement and diverse stakeholder engagement when we contemplate the effectiveness of SEL.

CWC LA will evaluate our SEL program with focused measures as well. Our assessment tools will assess mastery of SEL concepts such as emotion recognition, perspective taking, social problem solving, delay of gratification and frustration tolerance. We will utilize student input to create social network maps that will help teachers understand and facilitate social connections in the classrooms. Teachers will also observe SEL execution and student behavior using standardized scoring rubrics. Finally, we will seek formal and qualitative parent and principal feedback about our students' social-emotional learning and behaviors.

How can the LA2050 community and other stakeholders help your proposal succeed? (check all that apply)

Money (financial capital)

Volunteers/staff (human capital)

Publicity/awareness (social capital)

Infrastructure (building/space/vehicles, etc.)


Technical infrastructure (computers, etc.)

Community outreach

Network/relationship support

Quality improvement research

Other (please specify below):


Relevant enrichment/after-school SEL activities; connecting our students and families to other community programs or students working in the mindfulness/SEL field

47 Pink talk bubble tail c96b4a07ef1417e25d0bcf5c4cba4766b8bbf0382f07677990a9d5577885d4d7

Congratulations from Team Cell-Ed on winning the award!

by Cell-ED
4 months ago

Great school. Great families. Great kids!

by Yasminw
5 months ago

Great school

by Amls
5 months ago

We feel so fortunate to attend CWC Hollywood school. It exemplifies what teaching and educating children should be about.

CWC places importance on social and emotional guidance AS WELL AS (!) the academic curriculum without surrendering physical and creative education.

by Miranda_Sampson
5 months ago

What an awesome video! We feel incredibly proud to call CWC our school. The SEL program is one of the reason's we chose this school over others. Schools would benefit by having a program like this.

by arianaperez
5 months ago

I love CWC. They truly show what it means to value a healthy community, healthy play, respect, and inclusion. These core values are infused into all elements of Citizens of the World. The playground-classroom connection is strong and there is endless support for students to develop social emotional skills and leave our school as true citizens of the world.

by jezzabezz
5 months ago

If only every school incorporated social emotional learning as an integral part of the curriculum. Hopefully CWC will serve as a model for all.

by Silverlakerachel
5 months ago

Just like the name says Citizens of the World it creates what our world needs more of and that is people whom understand each other and not ones that judge each other. I know first hand the influence they have had over our family. Not just our child but our whole family has adopted this amazing culture. Thank you for this gift. It's one that must keep giving if we have a chance to make this world a better place. After all isn't that what we all want for our future? We are huge supporters and can't tell the story enough of how we are all better citizens of this world because of them. AMB

by ArichMB
5 months ago

CWC is making a difference in Los Angeles. More power to them!

by YuriSivo
5 months ago

CWC offers some of the finest, most caring and compassionate teachers with a curriculum rich with a fine balance of academic and global awareness. It is a joy hearing our grandson tell us about what he is learning, how much he adores his teacher, how much fun he has with his friends, and how passionately he cares for being in school. We wish all children could experience the joyful foundation he is having on so many levels at CWC! by Cara & Peter Granat

by CaraPeter
5 months ago

We are very grateful for having CwC Silverlake!!

by weng
5 months ago

Can not over-stress the importance SEL has to my family. My daughter was part of the first graduating class, in June and my son has just entered kindergarten. They both are such caring and confident children, who really can engage with their environment and community in deep and meaningful ways. I LOVE what CWC does for my family. CWC makes LA, California, and the World a better place!

by Gmamma44
5 months ago

our children's hearts are our future! Thanks for this caring initiative.

by stephanielandregan
5 months ago

As a result of CWCMV's SEL program, my children have built a "peace corner" at home and use it to cool off when they have arguments with each other.... and I didn't even ASK them to do it! What amazing tools they have been given!

by priscillasommer
5 months ago

We are so proud to have our 2 children at Citizen's of the World , a public school in the heart of Hollywood, Los Angeles. They see the diversity, beauty, grit and reality of this densely urban environment through the lens of a curious, hand's on, and progressive teaching model. It is a passionate place full of struggle and promise.

by JoanCollins
5 months ago

I love CWC staff
I love CWC families
I love CWC curriculum
I love CWC community
I love what CWC does for my kids.
And I'm a hard hearted man.
CWC is an amazing example of what a well managed and motivated group of people can achieve when they're all moving in the same direction. This place is special.

by abortroba@gmail.com
6 months ago

I grew up in the Midwest, just outside of St. Louis where I attended a series of excellent schools K - 12. We had great facilities, teachers and programs. In my 13 years of public school, there were 2 amazing teachers in particular that changed the path of my life in a positive way. My daughter, who attends CWC-Silver Lake, is now in 3rd grade and I can honestly say that she has had 4 teachers (K, 1,2 & 3) that not only have blown us as parents away, but have truly made a life-changing impact on her. What's inside the classroom is what counts and we are so blessed to have outstanding teachers and teacher aids that are supported by an incredible, pro-active, progressive-minded principle.

I'd love to claim responsibility for the amazing changes I've seen in our daughter, but I've got to give it up the CWC. We love, love, LOVE this school and are so incredible grateful to be apart of something very special!

by RustyMahmood
6 months ago

Our family is so fortunate to be a part of such a diverse, inspiring, creative, dedicated, and caring community of teachers, administrators, and families. CWC takes into consideration the whole child and by doing so has fostered an incredible love of learning and collaboration in my children, while at the same time helping shape them into empathetic and invested citizens of the world.

by see717
6 months ago

I didn't think we would ever find a school as wonderful as CWC. We are so grateful for this oasis in the LA school landscape. I truly believe that we are a part of the future of elementary education here.

by Nfrantz
6 months ago

I have confidence in CWC as it nurtures the children's potentials and encourages them to learn in an inspirational way. We love the school, the kind, loving teachers and staff.

Indo Benna

by IndoBenna
6 months ago

I struggle for the words to express my deep love and gratitude for what our family has been given by attending CWC. Thank you for your time and attention.

by czankowskizgmail
6 months ago

My son calls CWC his second home and sees classmates and staff as family. He(We) absolutely love the school and are immensely greatful to have found such a great community! We have experienced nothing but love, compassion and support x100000 since day one.

by N.Her
6 months ago

GREAT video with an even greater message. CWC rocks.

by bnybliss
6 months ago

Such an important learning tool that all can benefit from.

by Thenning
6 months ago

We are blessed to have this option for our grandchildren. They are blossoming under the gentle, kind and stimulating education provided at Citizens of the World. Keep on doing great work! Kim Wietzorek

by kwietzorek
6 months ago

So important for our future leaders.

by PatYeo
6 months ago

Buenas Tardes an todos,

Este es el primer año de mi niña. Esta muy feliz y contenta de pertenecer a CWC-Silverlake. No puedo decir mas que la escuela excedió toda mis expectativas escolares.Les deceo lo mejor a la Familia de CWC

by yiya1983
6 months ago

This is our third year at CWC and we are blown away by everything the network is doing to help change the face of public education in LA. The social-emotional learning curriculum is hands-down not only effective, but absolutely necessary in today's world. Kids are getting invaluable instruction on how to self-regulate, how to resolve conflict (inner and outer), what is happening in their brains when they are experiencing different emotional states... Imagine if we adults had learned all of this 30 years ago? CWC is helping our young Angelenos now so that the future is more peaceful for us all. We need to support this incredibly important work!

by julie73
6 months ago

My son has been at Citizens of the World Hollywood since its inception six years ago. He's now a fifth grader, and the social-emotional curriculum has helped him not just be a good learner, but to be a wonderful human being. Academics are always important, but the administrators, teachers, parents, and students at Citizens of the World know that there is much more to creating a rich, vibrant community than academics alone. I am so grateful to be part of this school!

by jasbo99
6 months ago

There is no other place in the world we would rather send our child. Her compassion, self-awareness and intellectual curiosity are the norm, not the exception in this community that continually evolves and grows from its strong roots of diversity.

by lizedwards
6 months ago

CWC has been a wonderful school that has helped our family build a real community. My child is learning how to tame the little beast that is in us all. He is building real relationships and what is more loves learning. He hates to leave when it is pick up time.Cwc teaches children how to interact with others in a humane and positive way.

by alandna
6 months ago

I am so grateful to have this option for my child on the autism spectrum--lessons are learned here daily that help with the struggles that prevent success in a typical school. Thanks, CWC!

by dorothy999999
6 months ago

We are lucky our daughter attends CWC and is flourishing academically as well as socially and is supported by a such caring and knowledgeable team.

by timmyb2000
6 months ago

CWC's program has given my children the opportunity to flourish - academically, socially and emotionally. I am grateful!

by CitizenMV
6 months ago

Continue with CWC excellent programs. My grandkids and their parents enjoy the school

by k215645
6 months ago

We have been at CWC for four years and watching my daughter's growth as a kind and peaceful little human in parallel with the growth of our wonderful school has been awe inspiring. I hope that the success of CWC and its SEL program paves the way to making this a standard for all children in LA.

by jsdla
6 months ago

I just love what this school does and what it stands for!

by m1ssunny80
6 months ago

It's all about our kids... It's all about our future. THIS is where we need to make an impact.

by lvolo
6 months ago

Bravo! Post this everywhere! You should get the vote!

by concerned4all
6 months ago

Great video. Well done!

6 months ago

Many schools that talk of principles of unity and diversity, global thinking, social and emotional care, educating the whole child, do only that; talk! I have seen that this school delivers! I don't trust my grandchildren's education for vision and the tools for global citizenship to very many, but this school is a treasure trove for knowledge on many levels!

by vtomlin
6 months ago

When your kids hurry in the morning to get to school early, and beg to stay later when you pick them up... You know you've found an awesome community! CWC is the place to be!

by McCallB
6 months ago

I can't say enough good things about this school. From the administration to the teachers to the kids and their families, I give it an A+

by Jjsmall
6 months ago

love this

by jmadelon
6 months ago

This is an Inspiring, devoted group of people committed to making school an amazing experience for kids of all backgrounds. It is a wonderful cause and the money would be put to great use.

by Lexiemurray
6 months ago

This is a wonderful school with an amazing community.!!

by schrifty24
6 months ago

I love this organization. I came across them and thought finally schools being brought to fruition that put values and ethics as essential for the education of children. For so long I have grown up in the LAUSD system and lamented about the systemic shortcomings of our schooling models not just in the academic sense but even more importantly the type of influence our models were having on our future citizens, and potential leaders of the various points of society. I always thought a great deal of the remedies to the societal ills that a lot of us bemoan is focusing on the next generations behind us and ensuring we are filling the gaps and removing neglect as it pertains to a child's character development and how they ultimately see themselves as a contributor to our society. Education with this sort of attention to our inner realities must be spread quickly...as we are in evident need of it's transformative power and the fruits that come with this edification of the minds and hearts of our young. They are SEEDS OF CHANGE...let us tend to them with attention, and our deepest love!

by DaddyMoon
6 months ago

Pink ribbon award box icon 45b87e779c93f5099a48378c2aadc0fcd51184974daecf76e3f5c50034ea21fb
Award topvotedidea 5a5ae14e3d56a10363ea2a398cece46cf4df891213cbe68677c19d8903a1932a
Circle 1 inactive e7784182a1bd5eace578987db27fc19ec6337f418c48c6c8732605b9043d50d0 Step1 title submission inactive cde083e53089b973e7c9dc80a44a038c1ce4cf3b2650aeb5549157d1ed58a2d9

Submission Began
Tuesday, September 08, 2015

Submission Ended
Tuesday, October 06, 2015
at 07:00 PM UTC

Circle 2 inactive 74a43088831beb43fdbd7591ef5d50a5a7a26ff92c9e8ed489782459fa31a8d9 Step2 title voting inactive 96be722f53c417edddb5742ba9a6dc2fd403f7e4f6c19dbe883d50d20d93689d

Voting Began
Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Voting Ended
Tuesday, November 03, 2015
at 08:00 PM UTC

Circle 3 83da7a9432aeea960e1a9e9ee93e7ea1221af6c8f42b27964f2e9999d94b2b8d Step3 title 3d9e2a65d6ea1ad301f8fc607f5f828bd96362932c71d81c0da5b1fd964422b0

Winner Announced
Tuesday, December 08, 2015