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BCPS Launches Happiness Pilot Program in Support of Mindfulness Initiative

November 12, 2020

As part of Broward County Public Schools (BCPS) strategic goal of providing safe and supportive learning environments for students, the District is implementing a new program that utilizes the research-backed science of positive psychology to teach children happiness skills as part of the class curriculum.

The Happier School Program, by the Happiness Studies Academy, is a comprehensive, multi-year educational intervention program that utilizes tools and strategies to teach students how to find a sense of purpose, take care of their physical wellbeing, grow from failure and hardship, nurture healthy relationships, as well as how to deal with difficult emotions and cultivate productive ones. These skills and abilities will contribute to students’ overall wellbeing.  

The three-year pilot is being launched at Driftwood Elementary School, Driftwood Middle School and Hollywood Hills High School, which each offer the District’s Health and Wellness Magnet Program. Teachers at the schools volunteered to participate in the program and are taking a virtual course to learn how to deliver happiness instruction to their students.

“Now more than ever, it is important for our students, families and teachers to have the tools and techniques to help them find happiness in the midst of the struggles our world is facing,” said BCPS Superintendent Robert W. Runcie. “Our District is the first in the nation to make this program available to students as part of our ongoing Mindfulness Initiative, further reaffirming our commitment to the emotional wellbeing of our children.”

Research shows the expected results include improved relationships among children and adults; stronger immune systems and improved physical health; higher levels of creativity, productivity and engagement; better overall performance in school and later in life; lower rates of violence, bullying, depression and anxiety; and higher levels of resilience and self-confidence.

To Learn more about the District’s Happiness pilot program, visit

Media note: The following links provide an interview with a Happiness Studies instructor and b-roll of a class:

View Happiness Studies Interview - Linda Gancitano, Peer Counselor & Happiness Studies Instructor at Driftwood Middle School.

View Happiness Studies b-roll – Class of sixth, seventh and eighth-grade students a Driftwood Middle School




“Committed to educating all students to reach their highest potential.”    

Broward County Public Schools (BCPS) is the sixth-largest school district in the nation and the second largest in the state of Florida. The District is Florida’s first fully accredited school system since 1962 and has nearly 261,000 pre-K-12th grade students and approximately 110,000 adult students in 241 schools, centers, and technical colleges, and 92 charter schools. BCPS serves a diverse student population, representing 170 different countries and 147 different languages. To connect with BCPS, visit, follow on Twitter @browardschools and Facebook at, and download the free BCPS mobile app.