For 35 years Tom Roderick served as founding executive director of Morningside Center for Teaching Social Responsibility, a national leader in the field of social and emotional learning (SEL) and a leading provider of SEL services in the New York City public schools. During his tenure, Tom founded an array of top-quality SEL programs, including the Resolving Conflict Creatively Program (with Linda Lantieri) and The 4Rs (Reading, Writing, Respect, and Resolution). Major scientific studies of The 4Rs and the RCCP found that these programs foster children’s social and emotional development and academic progress, and improve the climate for learning.
Morningside Center is the lead nonprofit partner of the New York City Department of Education in introducing restorative practices to schools throughout the city. The organization also helps design and implement the city’s Respect for All Program, operates several exemplary PAZ afterschool programs, and provides services in SEL capacity-building for afterschool staff through New York City’s Department of Youth and Community Development (DYCD). In November 2016 Morningside Center was awarded a prestigious federal Investing in Innovation (I3) grant for its Whole School Racial Equity Project, which is now in its third year of implementation.
Tom is the author of numerous coaching manuals, facilitator’s manuals, and teaching guides, including The 4Rs Teaching Guides (with his wife Maxine Phillips), Leading for Racial Equity: A Manual for Principal Coaches, and most recently C Squad: Together for the Journey, a circles-based SEL curriculum for middle school students, organized by challenges young adolescents’ face in their lives, such as Friendship, Stress, Navigating the Internet and Social Media, and Celebrating Culture and Standing Up to Discrimination and Oppression.
In May 2018 the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL) awarded Tom its Mary Utne O’Brien Award for Excellence in Expanding Evidence-Based Practice of Social and Emotional Learning.
Tom retired from Morningside Center on December 31, 2018. In retirement, or “redeployment” as he sees it, he will focus on spending more time with family, including a grandchild who is now ten months old, on writing about critical issues in education, and on contributing to the movement to address global warming.
Tom has a Bachelor’s Degree in history from Yale University, and a Master’s in Education and an Honorary Doctorate from Bank Street College of Education. He is the author of A School of Our Own: Parents, Power, and Community at the East Harlem Block Schools (Teachers College Press, 2001).