Volume 12, Number 4
Fall, 2007

Table of Contents

Mental Health in Schools: Much More than Services for the Few

Stresses that leaders concerned with advancing mental health in school need to focus on much more than just increasing clinical services. That, of course, has long been the message conveyed by advocates for prevention programs. It is also the message conveyed by those who stress that concerns about mental health involve much more than the focus on mental illness. This latter view includes an emphasis on promoting youth development, wellness, social and emotional learning, and fostering the emergence of a caring, supportive, and nurturing climate throughout a school. The article concludes with a call to action for a fundamental, systemic transformation in the ways schools, families, and communities address major barriers to learning and teaching.

Not Waiting for Failure

Schools have been accused of having a “waiting for failure” policy. Clearly it is important to respond to each student who is having trouble. And, it is essential to respond to problems as soon after onset as is feasible. But, it is also important to identify and correct deficiencies in current systems in order to prevent problems and improve the ways they are addressed so that fewer students need specialized individual assistance. Consequently, while it is compelling to think about student/learning supports mainly in terms of individual interventions, data on individual students also must be aggregated with a view to identifying system deficiencies. This brief discussion focuses on identifying and correcting such deficiencies.

Many Schools, Many Students: Equity in Addressing Barriers

Anyone interested in enhancing how schools address psychosocial and mental health concerns must strive to understand the scale of efforts to educate young people. Highlighted here is a sample of data from a set compiled by Institute of Education Sciences.

Center News

Have You Visited What’s New?
If not, here are some updates on recent Center resources and publications.

Do You Know About?

The National Initiative to Improve Adolescent Health (NIIAH)?
A brief description is offered of this opportunity for policy makers, health professional, community members, adolescents and their families to work together in addressing issues that affect adolescent health.

The What Works Clearinghouse?
Briefly described is this resource developed by U.S. Department of Education's Institute of Education Sciences to provide reviews of the effectiveness of replicable programs, products, practices, and policies intended to improve student outcomes.

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WebMaster: Perry Nelson (smhp@ucla.edu)