Cost Estimator

This cost estimator is based on the budgets of three school districts, ranging in size, that have implemented and staffed for districtwide SEL in different ways. Use this tool to estimate your district’s costs for SEL implementation if you were to use a similar budget model as Austin Independent School District (larger budget), Washoe County School District (mid-sized budget), or Wheaton-Warrenville School District (smaller budget).

Instructions

Fill in the seven values in this table.  It is okay to provide estimates — these calculations are intended to provide rough numbers to develop your implementation strategy and estimate the per student costs.

As you fill in the table, three charts below will automatically populate.  You will see a summary of the implementation strategy and staffing assumptions for each of the three districts.

Download the Cost Modeling Discussion Guide to use this information to develop your implementation strategy and staffing plan.








Austin Independent School District Model

Social and Emotional Learning Expansion and Coaching

Austin Independent School District phased in SEL over five years. Each year, the district SEL team expanded to support an additional 2-3 vertical teams (high schools and feeder schools) to launch SEL implementation.

  • – Each school received materials and training for an evidence-based SEL program.
  • – Each school created an SEL steering committee and designated a campus facilitator.
  • – Each school sent designees to a two-day leadership training and received onsite professional development sessions and coaching from a district SEL specialist.
  • – Each district SEL specialist was assigned to either elementary or high schools and supported 1-2 vertical teams.
  • – The district also funded an SEL team position to strengthen engagement with families/caregivers and community-based organizations.
  • – The district also invested in reviewing data for continuous improvement, funding an SEL-focused evaluation specialist within the Research and Evaluation Department.

If you followed this model, you would have:

  • – 1 full time SEL director
  • – 1 full time SEL administrative assistant
  • – 1 full time SEL curriculum specialist
  • – 1 full time SEL specialist per vertical team (hiring additional specialists each year)
  • – 1 full time parent education specialist starting in year 4
  • – .28 of a researcher in years 2 & 3 rising to 1 full time researcher starting in year 4

Click here to read more about Austin Independent School District’s budget and plan during their initial years of districtwide SEL implementation.

Cost Model Year One Year Two Year Three Year Four Year Five Year Six
Leadership Personnel            
Specialists            
Other costs (with per student factor)            
Projected Annual Cost            
Projected Number of Students Served            
Projected Per Student Cost            
Austin Students Served 14,234 35,665 49,931 64,197 85,596 85,596
Austin Per Student Cost $49 $30 $29 $31 $22 $18
             
             

Washoe County School District Model

Integrating SEL and Empowering Teacher Leaders

In Washoe County School District, the Coordinator of the Department of Multi-tiered System of Supports serves as the SEL lead, and responsibility for SEL implementation is distributed across several departments. WCSD used the first two years of their implementation to integrate SEL into training on the Common Core, pilot strategies with a dozen schools, build consensus on district SEL standards and accountability measures, and develop an intensive three-day training and ongoing professional learning communities for SEL leadership teams from all schools, which took place in years three and four. After their training, each SEL leadership team then leads training at their schools using modules provided by the district. Once implementing, each school receives additional professional development, coaching, and consultation from a smaller number of District SEL Specialists.

  • – SEL implementation launched with a focus on integration with academic instruction — SEL became part of professional learning that was already occurring.
  • – SEL implementation deepened using a train-the-trainer model. Teacher leaders were trained to provide professional learning on their campus, and were provided with modules from the district.
  • – The district provides curriculum materials for district-approved evidence-based SEL programs, and also supports a high school freshman seminar course focused on SEL.

If you followed this model, you would have:

  • – 0.45 of a full time SEL coordinator (shared with MTSS)
  • – 0.3 of a full time administrative assistant (shared with multiple departments)
  • – 1.15 SEL specialists in year 1, increasing to 2.45 FTE in years 2 & 3, with a gradual increase to 4 in year 6

Click here to read more about Washoe County School District’s budget and plan during their initial years of districtwide SEL implementation.

Cost Model Year One Year Two Year Three Year Four Year Five Year Six
Leadership Personnel            
Specialists            
Other costs (with per student factor)            
Projected Annual Cost            
Projected Number of Students Served            
Projected Per Student Cost            
Washoe County Students Served 8,042 18,094 36,858 62,324 62,324 62,324
Washoe County Per Student Cost $27 $41 $19 $11 $9 $11
             
             

Wheaton-Warrenville School District Model

Weaving SEL into the Fabric of the District

Wheaton-Warrenville School District 200 in Illinois has used a low cost strategy to implement SEL districtwide. SEL implementation is led by the Assistant Superintendent for Student Services and an SEL Design Team, with support from other district leaders. Key to their strategy is providing SEL training and support to principals who guide a consistent SEL approach at their schools.

  • – The implementation approach uses existing structures, strategies, and resources to build adult SEL expertise, provide professional development, and guide, monitor, assess, and refine SEL integration.
  • – There is an emphasis on keeping costs low and efficiency high through using existing personnel and structures. The low cost reduces the risk of budget cuts or political changes that might affect the sustainability of SEL.

If you followed this model, you would have:

  • – 0.2 of a full time cabinet-level leader

Click here to read more about Wheaton-Warrenville School District’s budget and plan during their initial years of districtwide SEL implementation.

Cost Model Year One Year Two Year Three Year Four Year Five Year Six
Leadership Personnel            
Specialists            
Other costs (with per student factor)            
Projected Annual Cost            
Projected Number of Students Served            
Projected Per Student Cost            
Wheaton Warrenville Students Served 13,500 13,500 13,500 13,500 13,500 13,500
Wheaton Warrenville Per Student Cost $3 $3 $3 $4 $6 $3
             
             


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