2023-24 SEL4SC Screenagers Series Impact Report


During the 2023-24 school year, the Social Emotional Learning Alliance for South Carolina presented 13 community screenings of the acclaimed documentary films, Screenagers Next Chapter and Screenagers Under the Influence. Created by filmmaker and physician Delaney Rushton, the films address roadblocks to the crucial foundational life skills promoted by SEL4SC.

These roadblocks include:

• Alcohol use and misuse
• Anxiety and mental health issues
• Bullying and cyberbullying
• Fentanyl, marijuana, and other drugs
• Smoking, vaping, and nicotine
• Screen time management and social media

Each screening was followed by a Q&A session featuring expert panelists, including mental health counselors, parenting coaches, physicians, and educators. SEL4SC was very fortunate to have 27 different expert panelists participate in our events, as well as 14 community partner organizations share crucial information during the series.

During our Q&A sessions, parents and students are asked questions related to the issues presented in each film.
We also conduct digital surveys of those in attendance to collect data about how well the events resonate with attendees — as well as learn about specific issues they might be dealing with.

Both parent and student response to the series was overwhelmingly positive, as 100% of parents and 91% of students said they found the events helpful, while 96.3% of parents said they felt better equipped to communicate with their children and 78.6% of students said they felt better equipped to communicate with their parents.

As part of each survey, we also ask attendees if they want to speak with a professional about any of the issues discussed in the films. During one event, three students and one parent responded that they wanted to speak with professionals — with one student mentioning that they had had thoughts of suicide. We were able to quickly route them to mental health counselors, who were able to provide personal assistance.

Our series is helping to meet a real need for parents and students who have questions about crucial issues.

Qualitative feedback from attendees, panelists, and administrators after screenings was also glowing.

Here’s a sampling:

“This is an amazing and unique thing you’re doing. The film was very enlightening, and I really appreciated the opportunity to interact with all these professionals under one roof.” — Parent

“The response from our community was overwhelmingly positive. The panel discussion was extraordinarily successful. The expert panel assembled by SEL4SC sparked insightful dialogue amongst the attendees. Parents and community members expressed gratitude for the opportunity to gain deeper insights into the risks associated with substance use and digital media exposure while students engaged in thoughtful discussions about making informed choices and resisting peer pressure.” — Timothy Thorn, Principal of James Island Charter High School

“It has been remarkable to witness the reaction of parents and students. The Screenagers programming is an excellent example of education for parents and students simultaneously… The presentations prompt reflective and meaningful conversations between the expert panelists and families, and provide parents and teens with a common language and a place to begin the conversation which will lead to meaningful changes.” — Kate Wade, M.Ed. Educational Psychology, Co-Founder & Coach of The Goalden System and Screenagers Series Panelist

“I can’t reiterate enough just how beautiful it is to see adults and kids having this real-life conversation, openly and honestly… The panel was phenomenal. Every single person was absolutely wonderful.“ — Parent

We are honored to working alongside families — and entire communities — to help the next generation navigate the digital age.

To learn more about our Screenagers series, click here to read our Impact Report.

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