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Available 5.30.23

"Stephanie Krauss demonstrates her grasp of the youth mental health crisis we face today and provides the guidance we need to cope with it. This compelling new work is for everyone who cares about young people – not just professionals – and I’m so grateful she has contributed to our understanding with such focus and compassion."


- Chuck Ingoglia, President and CEO,

National Council for Mental Wellbeing

If you care for kids in any capacity, pick up this book right now. It's innovative, humane, solution-oriented, and both powerful and incredibly practical.


--Anya Kamenetz, Author, The Stolen Year


Meet Stephanie Malia

Relentlessly focused on what kids need to thrive now and in the future.

I am a mom with a background in education and social work. Through my experiences teaching and running a school, I know getting young people to succeed academically does not always mean they are healthy, happy, or ready for what comes next. This was true in my own life. As a high school dropout, I needed people and opportunities within and beyond school to help me live and learn.

Today I work at the intersection of education, youth development, workforce development, and human services. My work and writing focuses on what young people need to build lives and futures they love. I am fortunate to work with brilliant leaders across the US to advocate for and build systems, structures, policies, and practices to make that possible.


I am the founder and principal consultant of First Quarter Strategies LLC, a senior fellow to Education Northwest and the CERES Institute for Children & Youth, a senior advisor for Children's Funding Project, and a staff consultant for the Youth Transition Funders Group. You can learn more about my current projects and ways to work together by visiting my consulting page or clicking here.

I am the author of Whole Child, Whole Life: 10 Ways to Help Kids Live, Learn, and Thrive and Making It: What Today's Kids Need for Tomorrow's World. I regularly write for parenting and education outlets including EdSurge and Scary Mommy.

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Whole Child, Whole Life

In a world that seems to grow more unpredictable and challenging by the day, how can we increase learning and joy for children while offering them much-needed support?


Uncertainty and disruption have created a youth mental health crisis that requires all hands on deck. This urgently needed guidebook offers comprehensive and scientifically-grounded methods you can use to support young people’s well-being, no matter what obstacles they face. Written by an expert with decades of experience in education, youth development, and social work, this timely and timeless resource includes:

  • 10 practices that can prevent and address mental health challenges and enable young people to thrive

  • Strategies for taking care of kids while also taking care of yourself

  • Information on the most pressing issues youth face, from nurturing healthy relationships to building community and belonging

  • Key takeaways and reflection questions for individual use and group discussion as well as “Try Now” sections with tips and tools that can be used immediately

Providing essential information, practical advice, stories, and time-tested strategies to help kids live and learn, Whole Child, Whole Life is required reading for anyone who is working with, caring for, or raising young people.



If you care for kids in any capacity, pick up this book right now. It's innovative, humane, solution-oriented, and both powerful and incredibly practical.


—  Anya Kamenetz, author of The Stolen Year;

former NPR education reporter 

Making It

The world feels volatile and uncertain. Major disruptions, from global pandemics to economic crises, are forcing us to live, learn, and work in new ways. Today's kids are growing up in the midst of rapid change. By the time they reach adulthood, things could look pretty different.


This book goes beyond the question of what young people need to succeed in school, to ask what they need to be ready for life. Explore the four currencies today's kids need to make it in tomorrow's world: competencies, connections, credentials, and cash. Learn how you can be a currency-builder in young people's lives.


Making It is essential reading for anyone who wants to ensure that young people are prepared for adulthood and able to thrive in changing and trying times.



Krauss offers the roadmap we need to get kids ready for a rapidly changing and challenging world. Her call for every adult and educator to become a currency-builder is one we should take seriously. This is a must read. 


—  Arne Duncan, former US Secretary of Education

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