Subject: NCSMH Newsletter - June 2019

NCSMH Newsletter
-June 2019-

The National Center for School Mental Health team wishes you a happy and healthy summer!
In this edition, you can find...
  • Information on the 2019 Annual Conference on Advancing School Mental Health-including extended poster applications!
  • LGBTQ+ Pride resources
  • School Mental Health Quality Improvement Spotlight
  • Information on the mid-atlantic School Health Interdisciplinary Program
  • Resources, Reports, and Journal Articles
  • Funding Opportunities & Policy Announcements
The 2019 Annual Conference on Advancing School Mental Health will take place November 7-9 in Austin, TX!
Visit our website for more information, or contact Sylvia McCree-Huntley at or 410-706-0981. 

Registration is now open-We hope to see you there! #ASMH2019

Want to present but missed the deadline? 
Poster applications are open until September 15!
June is Pride Month!
June is LGBTQ+ Pride month, which commemorates the stonewall riots to protest discrimination against gender and sexual minorities. While there have been improvements in lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer/questioning, and more gender and sexual minorities (LGBTQ+) safety and rights, LGBTQ+ people still face higher rates of anxiety and depression, and are more likely to experience family or peer rejection and attempt suicide. Schools are an excellent place to provide support and services to LGBTQ+ youth. The Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network (GLSEN) provides a breadth of resources and data for schools to use, including their Safe Space Kit. Additionally, the National Association of School Psychologists has a collection of resources to support LGBTQ+ youth in schools.

School Mental Health Quality Improvement Spotlight: 

On June 12th and 13th in Omaha, Nebraska, the Mid-America Mental Health Technology Transfer Center led by Dr. Joe Evans, with Dr. Brandy Clarke leading school mental health efforts, hosted a Training of Trainers Event for 50 participants on the National School Mental Health Training Curriculum. Participants from Iowa and Nebraska were among the first in the nation to be trained on the National School Mental Health Curriculum developed through the SAMHSA-funded Mental Health Technology Transfer Center (MHTTC) Network Coordinating Office (NCO) in collaboration with the National Center for School Mental Health. The training was led by Drs. Nancy Lever and Kris Scardamalia from the National Center for School Mental Health in collaboration with Dr. Clarke. “With little to no advertising for this event, we had a large, eager audience that was highly engaged and ready to learn, demonstrating the great need and interest in this topic,” stated Clarke. Goals of the training included: 1) Describe the core components of comprehensive school mental health, 2) Gain awareness of and strategies needed to deliver online modules, 3) Use the curriculum tools and resources to conduct school mental health consultation, 4) Guide teams in school mental health strategic planning. The training was a tremendous success and has led to discussion and action planning on how to best integrate the curriculum content and resources into school mental health efforts in States served by the Mid-America MHTTC.
From L to R: Dr. Nancy Lever, Dr. Joe Evans, Dr. Kris Scardamlia, Dr. Brandy Clarke, and Dr. Brenda Bassingthwaite.

Do you know a school mental health leader or team that we should feature in our School Mental Health Quality Improvement Spotlight? Send us your suggestions at

School Health Interdisciplinary Program (SHIP) 2019 in Columbia, MD!
Join leaders from across Maryland and the surrounding regions for the annual School Health Interdisciplinary Program (SHIP), August 7-8, 2019, with pre-conference sessions on August 6th, at the Sheraton Town Center Hotel in Columbia, Maryland. This year's theme is Advancing Innovation and Best Practices in School Health. Reserve your spot now! We invite all regional school health stakeholders who are interested to attend. Visit our website for professional contact hours, registration, cost, a program agenda, and more information.

LGBTQ+ Resources
June is Pride Month! The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) has compiled an extensive list of resources for child welfare professionals working with LGBTQ+ youth. The resources include best practices for professionals working with LGBTQ+ youth, their parents and caregivers, and youth themselves. 

Summer Success for Youth
The Child Mind Institute (CMI) developed a set of resources for helping youth during the summer. These brief guides include How to Keep Kids Reading This Summer, 13 Tips for Helping Anxious Kids Enjoy Summer Camp, Summer Success Kit for Kids with ADHD, Strategies for a Successful Summer Break, and Tips for Traveling with Challenging Children. Furthermore, CMI developed a list of children's books on mental health to help youth identify and process feelings. There are specific choices focused on trauma, grief and loss, and bullying, among others.

Community Violence
The National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN) developed a resource guide for understanding the experiences of youth impacted by community violence and best practices for coping with stress from exposure to community violence, including links and phone numbers to hotlines and on-call help. Additionally, NCTSN developed a one-page checklist for youth to assess the impact of violence in their lives, normalizing their experiences.

School Climate
The National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) developed a guide to help state and local education agencies measure and use school climate data. The guide includes rationale for collecting school climate data and best practices in measuring school climate and using data to effect change.

Social and Emotional Learning and Equity
The Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL) developed a newly enhanced District Resource Center to provide suggestions on how school districts can implement SEL to promote equity and inclusion. The Resource Center includes specific considerations for implementing SEL from an equity lens and resources from CASEL and other organizations.

Title IV - A Technical Assistance Center (T4PA TA Center)
The T4PA TA Center is offering assistance to State Education Agencies (SEAs) for implementing the Student Support and Academic Enrichment (SSAE) program. The Center is committed to helping state coordinators for SSAE identify grant implementation needs, develop a tailored plan to address these needs, and broker support to build capacity to implement Title IV, Part A at the state and local levels. A website is in development, but the Help Desk can be reached at or (833) 404-4845.

2018 LGBTQ Youth Report
: Kahn, E., Johnson, A., Lee, M., & Miranda, L.
Publishing Organization: Human Rights Campaign
The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Foundation and the University of Connecticut conducted a survey of more than 12,000 LGBTQ teenagers across the nation, revealing the persistent challenges so many LGBTQ youth face going about their daily lives at home, at school and in their communities. More than 12,000 respondents, ranging in age from 13 to 17, and from all 50 states and Washington D.C., participated in the online 2017 LGBTQ Teen Survey. It found that these teenagers are not only experiencing extremely high levels of stress, anxiety and rejection, but also overwhelmingly feel unsafe in their own school classrooms. LGBTQ young people who participated in the survey reported that supportive families and inclusive schools are key to their success and well-being. Key findings include: 77% of LGBTQ teenagers surveyed report feeling depressed or down over the past week; more than 70% report feelings of worthlessness and hopelessness in the past week; 95% of LGBTQ youth report trouble sleeping at night; only 26% say they always feel safe in their school classrooms -- and just 5% say all of their teachers and school staff are supportive of LGBTQ people; 67% report that they’ve heard family members make negative comments about LGBTQ people. LGBTQ youth of color and transgender teenagers experience unique challenges and elevated stress -- only 11% of youth of color surveyed believe their racial or ethnic group is regarded positively in the U.S., and over 50% of trans and gender expansive youth said they can never use school restrooms that align with their gender identity.

The Condition of Education 2019
: McFarland, J., Hussar, B., Zhang, J., Wang, X., Wang, K., Hein, S., Diliberti, M., Forrest Cataldi, E., Bullock Mann, F., & Barmer, A.
Publishing Organization: Institute of Education Sciences: National Center for Education Statistics
The Condition of Education is a congressionally mandated annual report summarizing important developments and trends in education using the latest available data. The 2019 Condition of Education report presents 48 indicators on topics ranging from prekindergarten through postsecondary education, as well as labor force outcomes and international comparisons. Also included in the report are two spotlight indicators that provide more in-depth analyses on selected topics. The first spotlight examines the variation in postsecondary enrollment patterns between young adults who were raised in high- and low-socioeconomic status families. The second spotlight explores new data on postsecondary outcomes, including completion and transfer rates, for nontraditional undergraduate students.

2016-17 National School-Based Health Care Census
Publishing Organization
: School-Based Health Alliance
The National School-Based Health Care Census is a triennial survey of school-based health centers (SBHCs). The 2016-17 Census—which had a 90% response rate—collected information on SBHC locations, staffing, services provided, populations served, telehealth services, and funding. The 2016-17 Census identified 2,584 SBHCs in 48 of 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. Over the past twenty years, the number of SBHCs in the country has more than doubled—growing from 1,135 SBHCs in 1998. This year the Alliance matched Census data and SBHCs with data from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) Public Elementary/Secondary School Universe Survey to examine the characteristics of students and schools with access to SBHCs. Results from that data indicate that more than 6.3 million students in the United States have access to an SBHC. The latest Census data also show an expansion of telehealth technology in SBHCs. As the first national survey to describe the use of telehealth in SBHCs, the 2016-17 Census contains information about telehealth sponsorship, communities served, and provider teams.

Helping Young Children Exposed to Trauma: A Systems Approach to Implementing Trauma-Informed Care
Authors: Loomis, A., Randall, K., & Lang, J.
Publishing Organization: Child Health and Development Institute of Connecticut
There are more than 228,000 children under the age of six years old in Connecticut, at least a quarter of whom research suggests will have experienced or witnessed one or more potentially traumatic events during their first years of life.Connecticut has made significant investments to address childhood trauma across a number of systems including child welfare, behavioral health, juvenile justice, education, and pediatrics. This IMPACT report includes a number of recommendations to continue supporting Connecticut’s early childhood system to be trauma-informed, including training and ongoing support about preventing, identifying, and responding to childhood trauma for all staff in home visiting and caregiver support programs, pediatric providers, and early care and education.

Efficacy of a combined approach to tier 2 social-emotional and behavioral intervention and the moderating effects of function
Authors: Eklund, K., Kilgus, S.P., Taylor, C., Allen, A., Meyer, L., Izumi, J....& Kilpatrick, K.
Journal: School Mental Health
Year: 2019
Abstract/Summary: Systematic literature reviews have supported the effectiveness of behavioral Tier 2 interventions, with research being particularly plentiful in relation to Check-In/Check-Out (CICO) and social skills training (SST). Though findings indicate either approach is effective in isolation, a recent study suggested these approaches might be particularly effective when integrated. The purpose of the current study was to build upon this initial single-case design study with a larger sample within a randomized controlled trial. Participants included 91 elementary students who had been identified as being at risk of social-emotional and behavioral difficulties. Students were randomized into three intervention conditions: CICO only, SST only, and CICO + SST. Prior to intervention, information was collected regarding the function of student problem behavior and the extent of social skill deficits. Systematic direct observation data were then completed at pre- and post-test regarding student positive and negative social engagement. Multivariate general linear models were then conducted, with pre-test scores serving as covariates and intervention group and behavioral function serving as fixed factors. Results indicated that implementation of CICO, SST, and a combined CICO + SST was functionally related to a reduction in negative social engagement. Follow-up post hoc tests indicated that after adjusting for pre-test responding, the difference between conditions in effectiveness was moderated by behavioral function. Specifically, SST was less effective for students whose behavior functioned to escape social and academic situations. No such differences were noted between students whose behavior functioned to attain adult or peer attention. Implications for practice, methodological limitations, and directions for future research are reviewed.

“Ready, willing, and able?”: Predictors of school mental health providers’ competency in working with LGBTQ youth
Authors: Smith-Millman, M., Harrison, S.E., Pierce, L., & Flaspohler, P.
Journal: Journal of LGBT Youth
Year: 2019
Abstract/Summary: School personnel play an important role in supporting the social-emotional needs of LGBTQ youth. Thus, the current study surveyed 157 school mental health providers (i.e., school psychologists, counselors, social workers) from the Southeastern United States in order to examine providers’ knowledge, attitudes, and experiences in working with LGBTQ youth. While a majority reported having provided services to LGBTQ students, participants identified multiple barriers that may hinder their care. A number of key predictors of competency were identified, including provider characteristics and professional affiliation. Results have important implications for building the capacity of schools to meet the needs of LGBTQ students.

Parental responses to bullying: Understanding the role of school policies and practices
Authors: Lindstrom Johnson, S., Waasdorp, T. E., Gaias, L. M., & Bradshaw, C. P.
Journal: Journal of Educational Psychology
Year: 2019
Abstract/Summary: Research, theory, and practice suggest an important role for parents in supporting their children when exposed to violence and helping them cope with victimization experiences. Despite this little is known about how parents respond to bullying and the factors that influence their response. Using data from 1,117 parents who reported that their middle or high schooler had been bullied in the past 30 days, this article identified different patterns of responses as well as examined the influence of perceptions of school climate, school policies and training, and school structural characteristics on their responses. A latent class analysis identified 3 different patterns of parental responses including Only Talk (72%), Contact School (23%), and Handle Themselves (5%). Parents who perceived the school to have more effective school rules were less likely to be in the class of parents who contacted the school versus the only talking class; however, school staff training was associated with a greater likelihood of parents being in the contact the school class versus the only talking class. Perceptions of equity were also related to an increased likelihood of being in the contact the school class versus the handle themselves class. These findings suggest that parents’ behaviors in response to bullying may be related to their perceptions of the school and school actions around bullying. Efforts to promote a collaborative approach to bullying between school and home should focus on communicating this expectation, potentially addressing parents’ perceptions of equitable treatment for all students.

Teacher attributions for children's attention‐deficit/hyperactivity disorder behaviors predict experiences with children and with classroom behavioral management in a summer program practicum
Authors: Mikami, A. Y., Smit, S., & Johnston, C.
Journal: Psychology in the Schools
Year: 2019
Abstract/Summary: Elementary school teachers often implement classroom behavioral management systems to address student misbehavior. Common problems targeted by these systems are the inattentive, hyperactive, and impulsive behaviors characteristic of attention‐deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). This study examined teachers' attributions for why children display ADHD behaviors, and how such attributions affect their experiences with children in the context of interventions to manage these behaviors. Participants were 32 preservice teachers undertaking a practicum in a summer program for 137 children (Grades 1–3), some of whom had ADHD. Teachers were trained to implement classroom‐wide behavioral management. Teachers' attributions for children's ADHD behaviors were assessed using a vignette measure, before teachers had met their students or begun training on intervention techniques. When controlling for attributions regarding oppositional behavior, teachers' initial attributions for ADHD behaviors as less internal/controllable predicted children reporting more positive relationships with that teacher during the summer program. Teachers' initial attributions for ADHD behaviors as less stable predicted teachers' greater satisfaction with the intervention techniques during the summer program and their greater attunement to children's social networks. Cognitions about the causes of children's ADHD behaviors held by preservice teachers may relate to their subsequent experiences with children in the context of implementing classroom behavioral management.


Mary Lou Anderson ArtsEd Grant
The Mary Lou Anderson Reflections Arts Enhancement Grant opportunity provides local PTAs the opportunity to match grant dollars with that of school and community partners to accomplish innovative arts education projects. In line with Mary Lou Anderson’s vision of access to the arts education, this grant opportunity places special emphasis on increasing access among at-risk and underserved students. It is National PTA’s hope that this grant opportunity will serve local PTAs that demonstrate a commitment to providing new pathways for students to participate in National PTA’s Reflections program and increasing at-risk student's access to high quality arts learning experiences.
Deadline: 6/30/19 11:59 PST

Grant requirements:
-Applicant must be a PTA in good standing, as determined by the State PTA.
-Project must occur between August-November 2019.
-Description of $1,000 in grant-funded expenses for teacher and learning resources/supplies.
-Description of process to obtain $1,000 in matching contributions from school/community partner.
-Recipient must complete a post-project survey by December 16, 2019.

This program provides funding to local and educational agencies (LEAs) to increase their capacity both to identify, assess, and serve students exposed to pervasive violence, helping to ensure that affected students are offered mental health services for trauma or anxiety; support conflict resolution programs; and implement other school-based violence prevention strategies in order to reduce the likelihood that these students will later commit violent acts.

The projects must offer students: (1) access to school-based counseling services, or referrals to community-based counseling services, for assistance in coping with trauma or anxiety; (2) school-based social and emotional supports for students to help address the effects of violence; (3) conflict resolution and other school-based strategies to prevent future violence; and (4) a safer and improved school environment, which may include, among others, activities to decrease the incidence of harassment, bullying, violence, gang involvement, and substance use. Applicants must address all four subparts of this absolute priority. This competition limits eligibility to LEAs, including charter school that are considered LEAs under State law.

Deadline: July 15, 2019
Estimate Available Funds: $10,000,000
Estimated Range of Awards: $250,000 to $1,000,000 per year for up to 5 years.
Estimated Average Size of Awards: $487,500 (for each year of funding requested)
Estimated Number of Awards: 20
Project Period: Up to 60 months

The School Climate Transformation Grant Program-Local Educational Agency Grants (SCTG-LEA) provides competitive grants to local and educational agencies (LEAs) to develop, enhance, or expand systems of support for, and technical assistance to, schools implementing a multi-tiered system of support, for improving school climate.

Deadline: July 22, 2019
Estimate Available Funds: $40,000,000
Estimated Range of Awards: $100,000 to $750,000 per year for up to 5 years.
Estimated Average Size of Awards: $500,000
Estimated Number of Awards: 80
Project Period: Up to 60 months


COMPREHENSIVE POLICY ANALYSIS: Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child (WSCC) State Laws Across the United States
Child Trends released a companion data visualization to their report on comprehensive policy analysis of state laws related to the WSCC framework. This dynamic visualization allows users to view in-depth information about all policies related to WSCC for each of the fifty states. It is a user-friendly platform that provides a significant amount of information in a digestible format.

CONGRESSIONAL BRIEFING: How Federal Policy Can Empower States and Communities to Provide Whole Child Education for All Students
On May 22, 2019, eleven educational organizations co-hosted a congressional briefing on Whole Child approaches for schools. The presentation details federal levers that can be leveraged to fund Whole Child programming in schools across the country.

REPORT: Protecting Students’ Civil Rights, The Federal Role in School Discipline
The Learning Policy Institute released a report that details both the negative impacts and disproportionality of zero-tolerance and exclusionary discipline policies. In addition, the report provides suggestions for and examples of state-level policies to reduce these detrimental disciplinary practices.

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