Urban Education Forum to Explore Emotions and School Success

Susanne Denham of George Mason University to speak

A child’s emotional competence, social awareness and behavior can have a powerful impact on that child’s chances for school success, according to Susanne Denham, Ph.D., of George Mason University. Denham will be the featured speaker at the 2018 Urban Education and Community Forum sponsored by the School of Education at the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

Denham is an applied developmental psychologist with particular expertise in the social and emotional development of children. In this forum, she will discuss how children’s self-regulation, social cognitions, emotional competence and positive social behaviors contribute to their early success in school. Denham also will examine how parent and teacher behavior affects children’s social-emotional learning, and how the educational system can best support those parents and teachers.

This year’s forum is scheduled for 5 p.m. Wednesday, April 25, in Room 401 of the UMKC Student Union, 5100 Cherry St., Kansas City, Missouri. The event is free and open to the public, but reservations are requested and available by visiting by April 16.

During the forum, the School of Education will honor Susan Wally, president and CEO of PREP-KC, as recipient of the 2018 Hugh J. Zimmer Award for Excellence in Urban Education. PREP-KC works to improve student achievement in the region’s urban schools, specifically through college and career preparation. Prior to founding PREP-KC, Wally served as vice president for education at the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation.

After graduating Summa Cum Laude from Western Maryland College, Denham went on to receive her MA from the Johns Hopkins University and her doctorate from the University of Maryland-Baltimore County. Prior to coming to George Mason University in 1985, Denham was an instructor at the University of Maryland, College Park, and a guest scientist at the National Institute of Mental Health Developmental Psychology Laboratory. Her research focuses on the role of emotional competence in children’s social and academic functioning, its assessment, and the role that parents and teachers play in fostering it.

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