Randima Fernando

2016-17 Year-Long Certification Launched

We are writing to announce that we are now accepting applications for the 2016-2017 Mindful Schools Year-Long Certification. This course is designed for dedicated mindfulness practitioners interested in playing leadership roles in their school communities and in the Mindfulness in Education movement. The program filled early and with a wait-list last year, which kept quite a few of you from taking part. This year, if you are thinking about participating in this program, we strongly encourage you to apply early.

This is an in-depth program with various details to consider. We’ve broken this message into two parts for easy reading.

Logistical Considerations

  • The program runs from Summer 2016 – Summer 2017. It begins and ends with a 6-night in-person retreat. You have the choice of joining either the East or West Coast cohort. See the course page for retreat dates/locations.
  • In between these two retreats is 10 months with over 300 hours of rich content and learning – you will gain access to practice support groups, weekly consults with the teachers, short curriculum exercises delivered by video, classroom handouts, and guest webinars on research and neuroscience. The course page has an outline of how the program content is organized. In the coming weeks, we will also be sharing samples of course content on our blog and Facebook page.
  • The program is limited to a total of 190 seats. The first 100 people accepted between now and March 15, 2016 will receive the Early Bird tuition rate ($3,300). A limited number of scholarships for educators with a demonstrated commitment to serving high-risk youth in under-resourced schools are also available. See the bottom of the course page for pricing details.
  • Completion of this program (along with a video-taped teaching practicum) results in certification. As the Mindful Schools network continues to grow both nationally and around the world, graduates of the program are actively helping to meet the growing demand of institutions searching for highly-trained mindfulness educators.
  • Prerequisites for this program are our Mindfulness Fundamentals and Mindful Educator Essentials courses. If you want to be considered for the 2016-2017 Year-Long Program, you must complete these courses before filling out your application.

Intention of Program

As an organization, Mindful Schools aims to balance accessibility with depth.  On the accessibility side, we offer introductory mindfulness training online for educators who are new to mindfulness and eager to share it with children and adolescents.

At the same time, we recognize that many of you want to go deeper. Many of you have complicated, nuanced questions about how to integrate mindfulness into the culture of your school and how to modify and customize and combine different curricula into a program that works. You also have questions about your personal practice — you are hitting the edges of your own psychological conditioning and you need the ongoing support of good teachers and a supportive community to be able to do the deeper work.

The Year-Long program was designed to provide you with the extended knowledge and training needed to deepen your personal practice and to play a leadership role in the growing Mindfulness in Education movement.

If this resonates with your goals, we deeply and wholeheartedly welcome you to apply to the Year-Long program. We also encourage you to talk directly to your colleagues who have gone through the program. Finally, we encourage you to email us and set up a call to talk about the program and learn how it can serve your work in mindfulness and education.

Warm regards,
Billy, Christina, Chris, Megan, Vinny, and Randy

From Graduates of the Program

richard-dutra-st-john“Some of the most embodied facilitation I have seen… this faculty sets the gold standard in the youth mindfulness field.”

Rich Dutra-St. John
Founder of Challenge Day and the Be the Change Movement

sandra-delaney“After 30 years in Education, this is the best training I’ve ever been to. This is the real deal.”

Sandra Delaney
Former Principal,
Asst. Superintendent,
and Educator

luisa-alvisu“I am humbled by my experience. It’s been so brilliantly crafted, so simple, so easy, so seamless… We feel like family, really.”

Luisa Alvizu
Transitional Life Coach and Mindfulness Educator

Randima Fernando

2015 Graduate Survey Results

Each year, we conduct an Annual Graduate Survey to learn more about the impact our graduates are having, how our courses have affected them, and how we can serve them better. The infographics below summarize the results our graduates reported after our Mindfulness Fundamentals and Mindful Educator Essentials courses. We’ll be using this data to inform more rigorous research over time.

Curriculum Training Results



Mindfulness Fundamentals Results


Randima Fernando

Silicon Valley Gives Event


A huge one-day fundraising event, called “Silicon Valley Gives,” is running today. We would love your help to get the most of this great opportunity to generate visibility for our work with high-profile foundations, companies, and individuals looking for a great cause:

1. Share this post and add something like the following text to your post (any added personal endorsement is also great):

“Please consider supporting Mindful Schools in today’s Silicon Valley Gives event. Mindful Schools provides online and in-person mindfulness training for educators, bringing mindfulness skills to over 300,000 youth to date. They have a $10,000 matching grant, and 100% of donations they receive will be used for scholarships.”

2. Given how powerful our community is, we can probably win the prize for most unique donors, adding a ton of extra visibility to our work (the leaderboard is on the Silicon Valley Gives front page). If you’d like to help with that, a $10 donation will get the job done. (You don’t need to be local to donate.)

Thank you so much for your consideration. Thank you also to the 1440 Foundation for their $10,000 matching grant! Let’s show the world what we can do together!

Randima Fernando

Mindfulness, Neurobiology, and Children

About this talk

In this “Talks at Google” presentation, Mindful Schools Program Director Chris McKenna shares exercises and strategies for bringing mindfulness into parenting and family life, including a discussion of young children’s neurobiology. He starts the talk with just a few minutes of warm-up practices, which we highly recommend. If you prefer not to do them at this moment, please jump ahead to the 11:00 mark in the video for the main talk.

Want to join the Mindfulness in Education movement?


  1. Build your own mindfulness practice
  2. Learn how to teach mindfulness to youth
  3. Help generate awareness, assist with networking, donate, or volunteer

Many thanks to Bill Duane and Kathleen Pedersen for the opportunity to present at Google!

Randima Fernando

Scholarships for Courses


Mindfulness is such a valuable tool that we want educators and parents everywhere to be able to take our trainings, regardless of their financial situation. Because of this, we use a subsidized pricing model where the fees of full-paying participants, combined with scholarship grants from foundations, make financial assistance possible for anyone who needs it.

How to Apply for a Scholarship

Please fill out an application to apply for one of our Mindful Educator Essentials scholarships.

Randima Fernando

Welcoming a New Year

All of us at Mindful Schools hope that your 2015 is off to a spectacular start!

As the year begins, interest in secular mindfulness has grown to an all-time high – with coverage in Time Magazine, 60 Minutes, countless contemporary books, and new research released almost every day, mindfulness has truly made it into the mainstream.

The notion that mindfulness is getting so much exposure is wonderful for all of us, whether we are practicing it personally or applying it in fields like education, health care, therapy, and so many others. If we pay close attention to the fidelity with which mindfulness is taught and represented, it has the potential to profoundly transform the way people of all ages and backgrounds relate to themselves, to others, and to the challenges and opportunities of being human.

For Mindful Schools, the essence of the Mindfulness in Education movement is transformation from the inside out. This organic, bottom-up approach is quite different from the typical education movement where an intervention is designed and implemented from the top down via policy, testing, or fiscal pressures. Educators have seen such interventions come and go numerous times, and they need an approach that genuinely puts their needs first. Our philosophy is to meet educators where they are – to start by aiding them with their own stress, well-being, and job satisfaction, and then offering the option to learn how to use mindfulness in their work with youth if they are moved to do so.

Our goal is to create a widespread, well-trained, and peer-supported network of mindful educators who are passionate about mindfulness because of their personal experience with it. We believe that these “early adopters” who lead the movement will inspire people around them to learn more – and we are thrilled that this is exactly what we have been seeing in our course enrollments. What began as individual registrations years ago has now grown to larger groups and entire schools driven by genuine interest in mindfulness rather than mandated policy – all as a result of the passion and dedication of our amazing community of graduates.

We are deeply grateful to all of you who have walked this path with us, whether you’ve taken our courses, supported us financially, advised us, volunteered, introduced funders, or assisted in any other way. All your actions, large or small, make a difference: conversing with your colleagues over lunch, commenting and sharing on social media, participating in course forums, or trying new mindfulness ideas with youth.

We thank you for all the innumerable ways that you’ve made it possible for thousands of educators and countless youth around the world to share the precious gift of mindfulness.

Our entire team wishes you the very best in happiness, health, and success in all that is truly important to you in 2015 and beyond. We have some very special announcements coming in the next few months, and we eagerly look forward to continuing this journey together with you.


Sincerely yours,

our-organization-randima-fernandoRandima (Randy) Fernando
Executive Director
Mindful Schools