For this webinar series, participants will automatically be enrolled in all 5 sessions.


  • Sydney Carter, Community Engagement Coordinator, REACH Beyond Domestic Violence
  • Molly Pistrang-Gomes, M. Ed., Youth Education Program Manager, REACH Beyond Domestic Violence

This 10-hour webinar will allow participants to deepen their understanding of trauma and domestic violence and their impact on youth and families. Sessions will include workshops that focus on building content knowledge, strategies, and skills that help practitioners support students, families, colleagues, and themselves. It will conclude with a session focused on how being exposed to trauma and suffering can impact education professionals and strategies for creating school environments and structures that are conducive for healing for every adult, child, and family. 

To receive PDPs and CEUs, participants must attend all 5 sessions and successfully pass a quiz following Session 5. Following the live webinar, registrants will be emailed a link to view the recorded webinar. The recording will be made available for 7 days after each session.

Many of our students have been exposed to trauma before ever entering our classroom. When children experience or are exposed to domestic violence and other forms of trauma, it can have a dramatic impact on their brain development. Every child has the incredible capacity to heal, and every child deserves a learning environment that fosters healing and resilience. This session will focus on the impact of child exposure to domestic violence and other forms of trauma, to help us better understand the behaviors a traumatized child may exhibit in the classroom and develop strategies to offer support. 

One in three teens experience teen dating violence, that we know of. Many teens experience shame and hide their relationships from their support systems. Teen relationship dynamics are heavily influenced by media, family, and peers. The dynamics that teens are learning from are not always healthy but can shape what a healthy relationship looks like to them. In this session, we will be discussing healthy, unhealthy, and abusive teen relationships. Participants will learn skills to recognize, respond, and support youth. Although these are hard conversations to have, they are important for growth and healing. 

Acknowledging someone’s experience is more important than we might think. Having one person to turn to that will believe and support them is the greatest indicator of healing. Educational professionals may be the person that their students look towards for support. In this session, we will discuss the difference between responding and reacting and building confidence in our responses to disclosures. We will also talk about the many ways to develop a trauma sensitive classroom to help support students who have experienced trauma.

There are many barriers that prevent people from disclosing abuse and getting the support that people deserve. In this session, we will identify barriers to receiving support. We will build confidence on having conversations that might make us uncomfortable, especially when working with people we care for. Participants will leave with tools for responding to difficult questions, as well as learn techniques to create two-way discussions about values, boundaries, and your role in supporting them.

Education professionals work hard every day to provide knowledge, support and advocate for their students. We know that carrying these experiences can weigh on us and affect how we show up. In this session, we will discuss practices and strategies to care for ourselves and one another in doing this important and impactful work. 

About the Speakers
Sydney Carter

Sydney Carter (she/her/hers) is the Community Engagement Coordinator at REACH Beyond Domestic Violence. Sydney’s job is to build community connections and educate the community on domestic violence. She does this by developing domestic violence prevention activities, actively participating in community roundtables, developing, and maintaining relationships with community members and organizations, providing specialized education, and training, and supporting community groups to implement prevention programs. Before becoming the Community Engagement Coordinator, Sydney started doing violence prevention in college as the Community Engagement Intern at REACH and with the Title IX office at her university.

Molly Pistrang-Gomes

Molly Pistrang-Gomes, M.Ed. (she/her), is the Youth Education Program Manager for REACH Beyond Domestic Violence. She has been working at REACH since 2017. In her role at REACH, she works with elementary, middle, and high school and college communities to build their capacity to foster healthy relationships and prevent intimate partner violence. This includes providing educator trainings, policy review, supporting school-wide initiatives, consultation for schools and teachers, curriculum support, parent and community events, classroom workshops for youth, and student club advising. She uses collaborative data collection practices to learn from and with community members to build social emotional skills, teach dynamics of healthy, unhealthy, and abusive relationships, disrupt systems of power and oppression, and model support and accountability.

Membership Information

Most MPY webinars are available ONLY to current staff from member districts and organizations. Public school memberships include police and fire personnel. Former and retired employees and members of committees, including but not limited to, PTO/PTA, PAC, School Improvement Councils, Health Councils, Drug/Alcohol Councils, and school volunteers, are not considered MPY members.

PDPs and CEUs

MPY is an approved Professional Development Provider through the Massachusetts Department of Elementary & Secondary Education (Provider No. F20180079). Professional Development Points (PDPs) are offered for most MPY professional development webinars. PDPs are issued in 10 hour increments, per DESE requirements.

Continuing Education Units (CEUs) are available for clinical staff through the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) and the Massachusetts Mental Health Counselors Association, Inc. (MaMHCA). The NASW and the MaMHCA approve each event individually. CEUs may be given in hourly increments.

To receive PDPs and CEUs, participants must pass the quiz.

Event Cancellation Policy

If you are unable to attend a MPY webinar you must cancel, through Bonnie Mullen at, one business day before the webinar.

For MPY hybrid conferences, the date in-person registration closes will be posted on MPY’s website. Virtual conference registration will close one business day before the hybrid conference. You cannot cancel or switch your registration from in-person to virtual after in-person registration closes. Please email Bonnie Mullen at with any questions regarding registration.

  • Enrollment in this course closed on 01/09/2024.

If you are seeking to receive CEUs and/or PDPs, please click Register Now. Once you complete the webinar series, you will be able to take quizzes for CEUs and/or PDPs. Upon completion of each quiz, you will receive a certificate.

All sessions are 12:00 pm – 2:00 pm.

  • Session 1: January 9, 2024, Introduction to Trauma and Child Exposure to Domestic Violence
  • Session 2: February 13, 2024, Healthy, Unhealthy, and Abusive Teen Relationships
  • Session 3: March 12, 2024, Responding to Disclosures and Trauma-Informed Care
  • Session 4: April 9, 2024, Building Confidence to have Difficult Conversations with Families, Colleagues, and Students
  • Session 5: May 14, 2024, Caring for Ourselves as a Way to Care for Our Students and Each Other