Author Topic: First National Survey of School Mental Health Services  (Read 581 times)

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First National Survey of School Mental Health Services
« on: November 22, 2005, 04:31:00 PM »
SAMHSA RELEASES FIRST NATIONAL SURVEY OF SCHOOL
MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES

One-fifth of students receive some type of
school-supported mental health services during the
school year, according to a new national survey
released today by the Substance Abuse and Mental
Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).  Elementary,
middle, and high schools all cite social,
interpersonal, or family problems as the most frequent
mental health problems for students.  

Mental health problems are broadly defined in the
new publication, School Mental Health Services in
the United States, 2002-2003, covering a spectrum
of concerns, from relatively mild, commonly seem
problems such as difficulty adjusting to a new
school, to more significant behavior problems such
as bullying, to serious psychiatric and
developmental disorders.  Mental health services were
defined as those services and supports delivered to
individual students who have been referred and
identified as having psychosocial or mental health
problems.

   
"Taking action to address childhood mental health
problems now can save lives, especially when
school personnel work with parents to identify
children and intervene appropriately before they
develop significant problems," said SAMHSA
Administrator Charles Curie. "This new survey shows schools
are responding to the mental health needs of their
students and provides new information on how
these services are organized, staffed, funded and
coordinated."

Topics explored in the survey report include
types of mental health problems encountered in school
settings; types of mental health services that
schools are delivering; numbers and qualifications
of school staff providing mental health services;
types of arrangements for delivering mental
health services in schools, including collaboration
with community-based providers; and major sources
of funding for school MH services.

Findings include:

.  Virtually all schools reported having at least
one staff member whose
    responsibilities included providing mental
health services to students.
.  The most common types of school mental health
providers were school
    counselors, followed by nurses, school
psychologists, and social workers.
    School nurses spent approximately a third of
their time providing mental
    health services.

The report provides the first national survey of
mental health services in a representative sample
of the approximately 83,000 public elementary,
middle, and high schools and their associated
school districts in the United States.

Copies can be obtained, free of charge, from
SAMHSA's National Mental Health Information Center at
1-800-789-2647, or on the web at
http://store.mentalhealth.org/cmhs/Mana ... /pubs.aspx
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