Year-Long Mindfulness Certification Program

Deepen your personal practice. Transform your work with youth.

We’ve started a notification list for those interested in learning more about next year’s 2018-2019 program. If you plan to apply, please be sure to sign up to receive email updates below.

Join Our Year-Long Notification List

Program Overview

Mindful Schools Year-Long Mindfulness Certification Program

Our Year-Long Certification Program is designed for educators interested in deepening their personal practice and playing active roles as leaders in school communities and in the broader mindfulness in education movement.

The objectives of the Mindful Schools Year-Long Certification Program are threefold: to deepen one’s personal mindfulness practice, to become a more skillful and embodied facilitator of mindfulness in youth-service oriented environments, and to join a large network of leaders integrating mindfulness in their work with young people around the globe. Participants gain access to our program via two channels: an interactive online 10-month training and a week-long retreat at the end of the program.

Interactive Online Training: This is a highly interactive program that includes weekly and monthly activities. Most participants will spend between 2-5 hours a week participating in webinars, engaging with mentors and practice teaching groups, completing reading and reflection activities, and collaborating with other grads on cohort calls, in addition to maintaining a personal mindfulness practice.

Closing Residential Retreat: Our week-long residential retreat offers rich, immersive programming. The retreat includes multiple days of silent practice, as well as workshops, discussions, and meals that are central for personal and professional development as well as community-building. For these reasons, attendance at the Closing Retreat is a required component of the program.

Finally, participants may choose to submit a teaching practicum. If your teaching is endorsed by our Review Committee, you will be considered a Certified Mindful Schools Instructor and listed on our Certified Instructor Directory.

For more details, view or download a PDF of our 2017-2018 Year-Long Program Brochure here.

2017-2018 Program Dates & Locations

Begins September 15, 2017: Launch of the Interactive Online10-Month Training Program
Closes July 2018: Week-Long Residential Closing Retreat

  • West Coast Retreat: 7/9/2018 –7/15/2018 at IONS Institute in Petaluma, CA
  • East Coast Retreat: 7/23/2018 –7/29/2018 at Garrison Institute in Garrison, NY

Program Details & Expectations

Program Outcomes
As a result of this training, program graduates will be:

  • connected to a vast archive of teaching and curriculum resources as well as a deep network of colleagues who will support both teaching work and personal practice
  • able to design and deliver a mindfulness program that is tailored to the needs of a specific school’s population, culture, and logistics
  • prepared to serve as a leader in the mindfulness in education movement and to speak to various constituents and stakeholders from parents to school boards about the benefits and best practices of teaching mindfulness to youth

Program Philosophy
The foundation of the Year-Long Program intertwines 3 core practices to effectively deliver mindfulness curriculum to youth.

  1. Personal Practice: Cultivate and deepen your own personal mindfulness practice.
  2. Embodied Teaching: Understand how personal practice improves connection, embodiment, and overall facilitation skills in your work with youth.
  3. Curriculum Delivery: Develop expertise in the effective implementation of mindfulness practices and techniques in your work with children and adolescents in a variety of contexts.

Most participants spend between 2-5 hours per week engaged in the following activities:

  • Online Content: Teaching videos and reflection assignments
  • Cohort Group: Hour-long video calls
  • Live Practice Talk and Q&A: 60 to 90 minutes (may be viewed afterwards)
  • Guest Speaker Series: Lectures from leaders in the field of mindfulness and education
  • Program Reading: Suggested articles or chapters vary by module
  • Optional Experiences: Office hours, reading groups, sitting groups, regional meet-up groups (where applicable)

Program Expertise & Support
Your year-long learning journey will be supported by an interdisciplinary team of experts working at the intersection of mindfulness and education.

Our Core Faculty includes a mix of curriculum, mindfulness, and implementation experts that collectively bring more than five decades of experience working in service of young people.

  • Lead Teachers: Alan Brown, Nicole Libin

    Alan Brown

    Nicole Libin

  • Practice Teachers: Bob Stahl, Keri Pederson, Bart van Melik

    Bob Stahl

    Keri Pederson

    Bart van Melnik

  • Mentor Lead: Kory O’Rourke

    Kory O’Rourke

We ask that all applicants have an established personal mindfulness practice and complete our Mindful Educator Essentials Course prior to the certification program start.

  • Personal Mindfulness Practice: We strongly recommend completing the Mindfulness Fundamentals Course, or you may provide additional information about your personal practice in your application.
  • Mindful Educator Essentials Course: Be sure to complete the course by August 30, 2017. We cannot waive the MEE prerequisite in lieu of other trainings as we want to ensure students bring a shared view of the Mindful Schools framework, practice, and intention before moving forward with the deeper work in the Year-Long Program.

Program Costs


  • Full Tuition: $4,475 USD

Retreat Lodging

  • Single Occupancy (limited capacity): $1,150 USD
  • Double Occupancy: $850 USD
  • The cost is the same for both the West Coast and East Coast closing retreats. Single occupancy is limited and awarded first-come-first-serve upon registration. These costs include food and lodging. Participants are responsible for the cost of their own travel arrangements.

Payment Options

  • Pay-In-Full Option: Receive a 5% tuition discount when all program costs (tuition + retreat) are paid in full upon registration
  • Payment Plan Option:
    • $500 non-refundable registration fee (which will be applied toward your tuition fees) due within 10 days after acceptance into the program to secure your space
    • One-third of your balance (tuition + retreat) due by September 15, 2017
    • One-third of your balance (tuition + retreat) due by December 15, 2017
    • Final balance due by March 15, 2018

Read our detailed Payment Policies here.

Mindful Schools is dedicated to making our trainings affordable to educators who would otherwise not be able to attend. We receive more requests for financial assistance than we can fulfill, so please take your time to evaluate your need honestly and thoughtfully. Additional scholarship criteria and details may be found in the Application.

How to Apply

We are no longer accepting applications for the 2017-2018 program. We’ve started a notification list for those interested in learning more about next year’s 2018-2019 program. Sign up to receive 2018-2019 program updates below.

Join Our 2018-2019 Notification List

PDF Download: 2017-2018 Year-Long Program Brochure

For more program details, please view or download a PDF of the 2017-2018 Year-Long Program Brochure.

View the Detailed 2017/18 Program Brochure


Questions? Please reach out to


Additional Advanced Training Courses

If you are looking to continue your training in interpersonal mindfulness and emotions, we encourage you to learn more about our advanced online courses:

Mindful Communication Course

Interpersonal communication – with staff, parents and students – is one of the most challenging areas for many educators. The more we understand and transform our own communication patterns, the more care, clarity and flexibility we are able to bring to our relationships.

Course Format: 8 Weeks Online, 2-4 hours per week
Course Highlights:

  • Learn to reduce stress associated with interpersonal differences and conflict.
  • Find creative and effective tools to handle student behavior issues.
  • Develop skills to create more trust, and collaboration with students, parents, faculty, and administrators.

Difficult Emotions Course

As educators, working with our own and our students emotional states is one of our main jobs. It is also something that almost none of us received formal training in, either in grad school or in subsequent professional development.

Course Format: 6 Weeks Online, 2-4 hours per week
Course Highlights:

  • Learn to reframe and interpret emotion in empowering ways.
  • Focus on challenging emotional states: anxiety, anger, self-criticism and shame.