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CASEN’s Concept originated when Chris was asked by his father if there was anything that he wished he had in school that he did not have that could help kids today.
After careful consideration, Chris said, “I wish someone would have taught me how to be appropriate on social media, like I was taught life skills in the classroom.” Chris also stated that he experienced cyberbullying on different social media platforms and his father and his father’s friends “policed his social media sites” and taught him what to post and what not to post, as well as who to friend and unfriend on social media. Chris recognized that all children may not have people like his father and his father’s friends in their lives and Chris wanted these children to still have a successful social media experience, even sooner than he had if possible. The purpose of CASEN is to help students achieve social wellness. CASEN’s goal is to help students become prepared for mainstream social media platforms; therefore, it is designed to be a precursor to traditional social media.
CASEN Connect is a social media platform designed for students with social-emotional needs, as well as other differences. CASEN originated as CASEN Connect in 2017. CASEN Connect is used as a precursor for students before going on mainstream social media platforms. CASEN is meant to support adult leaders such as teachers, parents/caregivers, social workers, psychologists and anyone who works with student groups (children who have a social deficit). In addition to the adult leaders using CASEN’s social media platform as a tool to provide learning content, CASEN provides a question of the day.
CASEN Outreach goes into the community via churches, camps, community centers etc. to present a healthy approach and outlook towards social media. In the summer of 2019, CASEN was invited to present CASEN’s concept through CASEN Outreach at Camp Xtreme in Norristown, Pennsylvania. CASEN presented two one hour sessions per week for six weeks. The first hour was for a group of campers 7-10 years of age and the second hour was for a group of campers 11-13 years of age. CASEN paired with the PA Office of Attorney General to teach the children the dangers of social media. Then CASEN spent the next several weeks teaching about types of bullying and cyberbullying, child predators, sexting, social media statistics, and some sexting laws, among other things.
The campers reported in a survey that they really enjoyed having a safe place to talk. Some campers even reported that they would report acts of bullying in the future whether it was experienced or witnessed.
CASEN also presented at Bethel Deliverance International Church Education Conference with the PA Office of Attorney General in August 2019. This was a two hour workshop for students 9-13 years of age.
CASEN Education Social Network Wellness Academy is designed to teach social wellness to students. The Social Network Wellness Academy identifies the strengths of students and builds upon their strengths to teach social wellness. CASEN Education was developed in 2020. The student’s challenges and weaknesses are identified and strengthened. Many education platforms identify and teach towards the weaknesses and deficits of students which may cause the student to feel less than or behind their peers. CASEN believes that for students to become appropriate on social media, they need to learn what it means to have social wellness. This is achieved by taking practical lessons on social-emotional learning, already taught in school, and connecting them to real life situations and experiences. Then these skills will be practiced in a safe online platform via CASEN Connect.
Social wellness is taught through CASEN Education Social Network Wellness Academy. The Social Network Wellness Academy is an online course of seven learning modules for students 9-13 years of age. CASEN’s approach is to empower the student where they currently are and stimulate them to want to learn more. This will be done through a series of Once the CASEN curriculum is completed, the students will progress to the CASEN Connect social media app to practice what they have learned.
The year after I graduated from high school, I was talking to my father (Chris Sr.) about social media and about how far I have come with navigating it. My father asked me what I wish I had in school that I didn’t have that would help kids today. I came up with a concept of how cool it would be to create a social media app that would be anti-bullying, teach appropriateness, and allow kids to feel free to post on social media without being made fun of. I expressed that, although I am now able to successfully navigate through social media, some kids may not ever be comfortable with it but that they deserve a platform to enjoy social media as well.
My father and I thought that this kind of app was a great idea but we weren’t sure how to get started. We wondered who could take this idea from an idea to an actual app. Within one minute I decided to bring it to my mom, Dr. Myava Clark, who happens to not only have a PhD in Education but she is also a parent who witnessed her child confront these challenges.
Social-Emotional Development in Children
Mental Health Development in Children
Academic Development in Children
Identity Development in Children
Cognitive Development in Children
Physical Development in Children
Social Media Readiness
CASEN‘s future plan is to build a social media platform for children on different levels of the Autism Spectrum, including nonverbal children. We also desire to create a financial opportunity for children to earn an income, who otherwise would not be afforded financial compensation, details to come.
About Chris Clark Jr.
Chris graduated from Springfield Township High School in Montgomery County Pennsylvania, in 2016. He also attended Montgomery County Community College for Social Work. Chris struggled socially and academically at times throughout school. At different points in time, he had special education classes, as well as regular education classes. Chris often felt like he was trapped between two worlds. However, he believes that this helped him to relate to both groups.
There were times when Chris did not know where he truly fit in and sometimes this caused him to feel alone. To turn this around, Chris was able to find a sense of belonging through sports. He joined the track and cross country teams in middle school and high school. Chris also participated in the drama club. These social outlets really helped him.
“I want to preverent kids from struggling on social media and have a safe social space.”
About Dr. Myava Clark
Dr. Myava Clark earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology with a Concentration in Respiratory Therapy from Millersville University; a Master of Education degree specializing in Elementary Education from Arcadia University; and a Doctor of Philosophy Degree specializing in Higher Education and Leadership and Administration from Capella University.
Dr. Clark has over 27 years of experience as a respiratory therapy clinician treating both adults and children. She has worked in several hospitals in and around Philadelphia. Dr. Clark is an Assistant Professor at the University of Cincinnati and she works as a laboratory specialist and clinical instructor at the Community College of Philadelphia.
Dr. Clark is married to Chris Sr. and she is the mother of two children, Chris Jr. and Kyra. Chris Jr. had academic challenges at a very young age and Dr. Clark used her Master’s Degree in Elementary Education to work with Chris Jr. which helped him gain the tools he needed to improve his skills.
Dr. Clark is formally from the Cobbs Creek section of Philadelphia. She enjoys spending time with her family; going to church; physical fitness; and coaching people to live a healthier lifestyle. Dr. Clark also enjoys photography and she takes pictures at special events for her family and friends.
”Everyone needs a safe space to feel trusted, respected, and valued. CASEN is that safe space!”