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Teachers as Partners in Effective School-Based Mental Health Programs

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Most youth in need of MH intervention don't receive it ... Cognitive Dissonance 'Equal standing'? Mental health hierarchies. Expert vs. consultee ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Teachers as Partners in Effective School-Based Mental Health Programs


1
Teachers as Partners in Effective School-Based
Mental Health Programs
  • Therese C. Johnston, Ph.D.
  • Carl E. Paternite, Ph.D.
  • Ohio Mental Health Network for School Success

2
Introductions
  • Carl Paternite, Ph.D.
  • Department of Psychology
  • Miami University
  • Oxford, Ohio 45056
  • paternce_at_muohio.edu

3
Introductions
  • Terri Johnston, Ph.D.
  • Educator Consultant
  • Behavior Consultant
  • tcjohnston_at_sbcglobal.net

4
Background and Context
  • Most youth in need of MH intervention dont
    receive it
  • Of the small percentage that do the majority
    receive treatment within a school setting
  • (Rones Hoagwood, 2000)

5
Background and Context
  • Service realities
  • Reliance on primary care medical settings
  • Community mental health clinics
  • Private practitioners

6
Background and Context
  • Historically, school services focused on special
    education population
  • Emphasized individual assessment and intervention

7
Historical Relationship
  • Teachers seen as information source
  • Teachers often perceived as untrained and
    unreceptive to consultation from MH provider

8
Educators vs. Therapists
  • Sedlak (1997) discussed the uneasy alliance
    between service providers and schools
  • Mental health staff (e.g., social workers,
    psychologists, counselors, etc.) seen as frills
    not essential to the academic mission of schools

9
Educators vs. Therapists
  • MH Provider Goals
  • Focused on the individual
  • Social/emotional goals considered to be not
    related to academic success
  • Therapeutic interventions occur in private
    pull-out sessions
  • Confidentiality sited as reasons not to inform
    teachers of progress

10
Educators vs. Therapists
  • Teacher Goals
  • Focused on the group rather than the individual
  • Academic achievement mandated as primary concern
  • Feel unprepared to face the emotional demands of
    ever-changing population

11
Cooperation vs. Integration
  • Many so called school-based programs co-exist in
    the buildings
  • Rarely are mental health staff and educators
    actually working together identifying and sharing
  • Values
  • Goals
  • Strategies

12
The Role of Schools
  • Cant be responsible for meeting the all the
    needs
  • Must meet then challenges when needs directly
    affect learning and school success (Carnegie
    Council Task Force on Education of Young
    Adolescents, 1989 Elias, Zins, Graczyk,
    Weissberg, 2003)

13
The Role of Schools
  • Compelling evidence
  • Positive associations between mental health and
    academic success
  • Emotional, social, and behavioral health problems
    are significant barriers to learning (Adelman
    Taylor, 1999 Atkins, Frazzier, Adil Talbott,
    2003)

14
Partnership is Critical
  • Public schools mission is to educate all
    students
  • Students with challenges of SED have the highest
    rates of school failure
  • 50 drop out compared to 30 for students with
    other disabilities
  • Mental health is essential to learning as well as
    social and emotional development
  • The interplay between emotional health and school
    success indicates schools must be partners
  • Presidents New Freedom Commission on Mental
    Health Achieving the Promise Transforming Mental
    Health Care in America (2003)

15
Essential Attitudes for Collaboration
  • Providers should view educators as valued
    customers
  • Focus should explicitly be on MH barriers to
    schools success

16
Essential Attitudes for Collaboration
  • Educators should be viewed as
  • valued colleagues
  • Essential members of the mental health team

17
Cognitive Dissonance
  • Equal standing??????
  • Mental health hierarchies
  • Expert vs. consultee

18
Teachers Lack Confidence
  • Feel ill prepared to design or support
    interventions for students with psychiatric
    disorders even when primary disability is
    attributed to emotional or behavior problems
    (Maag, 2002)

19
Student Support
  • Educators rarely know anything about mental
    health services students are receiving nor the
    nature or intensity of the services
  • Teachers who are engaged with students day after
    day play central roles in facilitating social and
    emotional learning

20
Student Support
  • Important collaboration could include
  • Assistance and consultation with social skill
    instruction IN THE CLASSROOM
  • Development and monitoring of behavior
    intervention plans
  • Consultation with parents to encourage consistent
    strategies and promotion of practice and
    reinforcement of alternative behaviors across
    contexts

21
Models Fully Engaging Educators
  • Positive Behavior Support
  • Re-Education

22
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23
School-Wide PBS
  • Continuum of integrated activities
  • Health promotion through intensive intervention
  • Dependent on effective multi-disciplinary
    teamwork and engagement of families
  • Positive behavior refers to all skills that
    increase a students success in the home, school
    and community setting
  • Support refers to the methods used to teach,
    strengthen and expand positive behaviors
  • (Sugai et al., 2000)

24
PBS
  • Shows promise as an effective preventative
    strategy
  • Decreases antisocial and other behavior
    difficulties amongst a growing population of
    children and youth

25
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26
Project Re-ED
  • Re-ED
  • Re-Education of Emotionally Disturbed Children
  • Based on the work of Dr. Nicholas Hobbs more than
    40 years ago
  • Observation of residential treatment programs in
    Western European countries
  • Noted that programs dominated by an elaborate
    professional hierarchy were less effective than
    those relying on and valued the interpersonal
    rapport of natural child care workers

27
The Heart of Re-ED
  • Problems do not reside within a child
  • Instead, the interaction of contextual variables
    in the natural setting contributes to the discord

28
12 Principles of Re-ED
  • Life is to be lived now
  • The group is important
  • Trust is essential
  • Competence makes a different
  • Time is an ally
  • Intelligence can be taught

29
12 Principles of Re-ED
  • The body is the armature of the self (i.e., the
    physical self around which the psychological self
    is constructed
  • Communities are important
  • Feelings should be nurtured
  • Self-control can be taught
  • Ceremony and ritual give order
  • A child should know some joy in each day

30
The Heart of Re-ED
  • Therapeutic focus is competence enhancement
    rather than deficit reduction
  • Academic achievement is of particular importance
  • School and school work is the business of
    children, and successful living is healing
    (Valore, 2002)

31
Educators Supporting Mental Health
  • Most children fail in school because the feel
    detached, alienated and isolated from the
    process, not due to the lack of cognitive skills
  • the bond between the teacher and student
    creates the foundation upon which a sense of
    belonging can develop
  • (Beck Malley, 1998)

32
Resilient Youth
  • Several studies suggest factors present in
    resilient youth include
  • Successful school experiences
  • Development of reading skills above the 3rd grade
  • Associations with caring adults outside the
    family
  • Ability to maintain hope
  • (Gilliam Scoot, 1998 McEvoy Welker, 2000)

33
Conclusion
  • It is essential to engage educators in
    collaborative partnerships in order to promote
    both mental health and school success for
    children and adolescents

34
Adopt Inclusive definition of the term educator
  • Policy makers, central office administrators,
    building-level administrators, classroom and
    non-classroom staff (e.g., guidance counselors,
    school psychologists, nurses, etc.)
  • Recognize the diversity of roles and the
    diversity of strategies these folks can support

35
Establish formal relationships with key opinion
leaders among the educational staff
  • Teacher-consultants model
  • Serve as program advisors and champions for
    initiatives within school related mental health
    promotion
  • Can become peer mentors and advocates for
    demystifying the concept of mental health

36
Become immersed in the school community
  • Be reliable about attendance and flexible in
    program delivery
  • Attend school events, e.g., sports, concerts
    award ceremonies, etc.
  • Dont unwittingly transfer the tendency to view
    what happens behind closed doors with a client as
    the essence of the providers work

37
Conduct detailed, local needs assessments
  • Survey the perspective of educators, students and
    parents
  • Include school climate assessments
  • Understand the unique characteristics of school
    cultures

38
Prioritize mental health promotion and problem
prevention initiatives
  • Recognize the difficulty in delivering a full
    spectrum of services
  • Refuse to allow drift toward primarily
    individual services for students with
    severe/chronic problems
  • Focus on adapting programs to the needs and
    competencies of teachers

39
Promote EFFECTIVE practices
  • This involves more than selecting
    evidence-based practice
  • Most have not bee examined for effectiveness,
    palatability, durability, affordability, and
    sustainability in real-world school settings
  • Remember to include academic and school success
    outcomes

40
Heart Test
  • The story of Teddy.
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