A CAR accident, family breakdown or fleeing a war- torn country can all cause children to suffer trauma.
How that affects the child can have not only an impact on their schoolwork but also wider ramifications for the community.
As recipients of a Hardie Fellowship, four Northern educators - Kings Meadows High School principal Ann Fedyk and year 8 teacher Jason Gunn, RADAR program manager Lisa Drinkwater and Northern Support School acting principal Craig Woodfall - will use their fellowship to visit schools and institutions in the US that are focused on understanding trauma and its effects.
Their aim will be to research and possibly develop a "how to deal with trauma" program for all Tasmanian schools and students.
The four joined forces through the Australian Childhood Foundation's Transforming Trauma program, which brought together Kings Meadows and RADAR as project schools, and the Northern Support School, which caters for students with disability.
As part of their research, which was later considered for the fellowship, Kings Meadows year 8 students took part in the MindUp program to identify how the brain reacts to trauma and strategies on how to cope.
The students were divided into three groups that were taught how to use "brain breaks" or coping mechanisms, and two groups that were not and acted as the control.
Ms Fedyk said the data at the end showed that students who had learned how to cope had better social and emotional well-being.
Mr Woodfall, who had previously worked at RADAR, said that once he started at the support school, he recognised how beneficial the program could be there.
"What we know of students who have experienced trauma is they are at significant risk of disengaging with education, and while from an education point of view that's not desirable for teaching and it's upsetting and heartbreaking, from a community or society's point of view it has a far greater significance and cost," he said.
The Hardie Fellowship was established by Professor Charles Hardie, who left $7.5 million to the Education Department to fund fellowships for teachers to the US.
The other Northern recipient was Riverside High School's Donelle Batty, for her work on the development of online communities.