School Mental Health

Background information
Links to a diverse collection of papers and fact sheets that address children’s mental health issues and children’s access to care.

A Guide to Federal Education Programs That Can Fund K-12 Universal Prevention and Social and Emotional Learning Activities
This guide is intended to help districts take advantage of federal education funding by identifying K-12 grant programs in the U.S. Department of Education (ED) that could be used to implement prevention efforts in elementary and secondary schools. CHHCS and the Center on Education Policy analyzed dozens of federally funded programs administered by the U.S. Department of Education. This research found 15 specific funded programs that contain either explicit or implicit authority for prevention-related activities. The main sections of this guide describe each of these programs, including their purpose, recent funding levels, entities eligible for funding, and specific provisions in the authorizing legislation, regulations, or program guidance that explicitly or implicitly permit funds to be used for prevention.

Handsome mixed-race student in class, ready to learn.

NPR: A Silent Epidemic: The Mental Health Crisis In Our Schools (September 7, 2016)

WAMU: Feeling ‘Invisible’ — How Mental Illness Often Goes Unnoticed In The Classroom (May 23, 2016)

The Impact of School-Connected Behavioral and Emotional Health Interventions on Student Academic Performance: An Annotated Bibliography of Research Literature
This annotated bibliography provides a systematic review of current literature published between 2001 and 2013 and summarizes findings on the relationship between prevention-focused behavioral health interventions, such as social and emotional (SEL) learning programs, and their impact on academic outcomes.

Autism Spectrum Disorders & Transitions

Developing a Business Plan for Sustaining School Mental Health Services
Despite its documented benefits, school mental health continues to hit barriers to growth. Financing is commonly cited as the primary challenge. This document describes how three communities and their lead mental health agencies have worked with schools and other local and state agencies to develop sustainable programs.

Improving Access to Children’s Mental Health Care: Lessons from a Study of Eleven States
A challenge to expanding children’s mental health care through the Affordable Care Act is the underdeveloped state of these services across the U.S. An 11-state study conducted by the Center for Health and Health Care in Schools identifies both common barriers to and encouraging examples of success.

May 22, 2013: Mental Health Awareness Month Youth Suicide and Mental Health Briefing

January 22, 2013: House Democratic Gun Violence Prevention Task Force Mental Health Briefing

Trauma and Grief Resources
In the wake of various violent events causing trauma in our communities, we have compiled a list of resources for dealing with Trauma and Grief in Children.

September 21, 2011: Thought Leader Dialogue Meeting
Information on the Thought Leader Dialogue meeting in Charleston SC, in addition to resources on national prevention strategies.

School Mental Health Services for the 21st Century: Lessons from the District of Columbia School Mental Health Program

Caring Across Communities: Addressing the Mental Health Needs of Diverse Children and Youth
Caring Across Communities, an initiative of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, was designed to help meet the mental health needs of immigrant children and youth by building on strong community-school partnerships.

Financing issues
Papers that explore: managed care, interactions between financing policies and mental health services organization, Medicaid and mental health.

Caring for Kids Grant Program: Expanding Dental and Mental and Health Services through School-Based Health Centers. Under this one-time-only grant initiative, The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation provided support to 15 school-based health center programs to expand their mental health services (8) and their dental health services (7).

State school-based mental health programs – Final Report

District of Columbia Department of Mental Health 

School Mental Health Services for the 21st Century: Lessons from the District of Columbia School Mental Health Program
The Center for Health and Health Care in Schools was asked to recommend a plan for sustaining and expanding school-based mental health services in Washington, DC. This December 2008 report reviews the history of school mental health in the District of Columbia, reports on lessons learned from other states and localities, and identifies best and promising practices in organizational management, program development, professional training, and financing strategies.

School Mental Health Program Retrospective Report: 2000-2005

In addition to general references, the bibliography has special sections on internet resources, financing and prevention

Resources and links
An annotated list of web sites that provide particularly useful information.