Special Resource Material Developed by the Center

Title: Embedding Mental Health into a Learning Supports Component: An Essential Step for the Field to Take Now (Policy Alert)

Description: The time has come for ending the counterproductive competition that arises from efforts that push separate, narrow agenda for student and learning supports. No single program or service can address the range of factors interfering with equity of opportunity to succeed at school for the large number of students affected. And the competition for resources resulting from separate advocacy for such programs and services, such as those associated with mental health in schools, is contributing to the continuing marginalization and resultant fragmentation of such endeavors and the fact that they reach only a small proportion of the many students who should be beneficiaries.

The bottom line in terms of policy is that it is time to adopt a comprehensive concept such as learning supports as the umbrella under which those who push for expanding the focus on mental (and physical) health must learn to embed themselves. A health agenda (and especially a clinical health agenda) by itself is too narrow to fit into the broad mission of schools in our society and is inadequate for enabling equity of opportunity for all students to succeed at school. We can continue to build a few islands of excellence (demonstrations, pilots) and ?Cadillac models,? but with over 90,000 schools in the U.S.A., the scale of need demands moving quickly in fundamentally new directions.

Access at:   http://smhp.psych.ucla.edu/pdfdocs/embeddingmh.pdf  4pp; 51kb