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Training & Technical Assistance

Training and Technical Assistance is critical to and has been a cornerstone of the NCSMH mission since its inception. The NCSMH leads numerous training and technical assistance efforts to increase and improve high quality comprehensive school mental health systems across the nation. In particular, the NCSMH leads the National Quality Initiative for Comprehensive School Mental Health Systems including the development and implementation of the National School Mental Health Census and Performance Measures and corresponding resources housed on the SHAPE System.

School Health Services National Quality Initiative

Project Staff:

  • Sharon Hoover, PhD, UMB Principal Investigator
  • Nancy Lever, PhD, State UMB Co-PI/State CoP/Policy Lead
  • Jill Bohnenkamp, PhD, Lead Evaluator
  • Elizabeth Connors, PhD, CoIIN Lead and Improvement Advisor
  • Brittany Patterson, PhD, State Policy Analyst
  • Shawn Orenstein, MPH, Program Specialist
  • Sam Reaves, PhD, Postdoctoral Fellow
  • Perrin Robinson, MS, Communications Manager
  • Taneisha Carter, BA, Research Assistant
  • Sylvia Huntley, EdD, Meeting Manager
  • Christina Huntley, MS, Program Assistant

Funding Source:

Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), Maternal and Child and Health Bureau (MCHB)

Project Partners:

The School Based Health Alliance (SBHA), The Center for Health and Healthcare in Schools (CHHCS)

Project Description:

The School-Based Health Alliance (“The Alliance”) and the National Center for School Mental Health (NCSMH) were jointly awarded a cooperative agreement from the federal Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB) at the Health Resources and Services Administration to lead innovation and improvement in quality of care through school-based health services. The two organizations are eager to build on the momentum of the previous four years leading the School Health Services National Quality Initiative (NQI), and work collaboratively with their partners, including the Center for Health and Health Care in Schools at George Washington University, project advisors, and school health providers from across the nation to ensure the highest quality of care for children and adolescents receiving services in schools.

The 5-year agreement supports the partnering organizations’ efforts to improve the quality of care delivered by school-based health centers (SBHCs) and comprehensive school mental health systems (CSMHSs) nationwide. The Alliance, the NCSMH, and our partners will:

  • Review and refine current national performance measures;
  • Conduct three quality improvement collaboratives of cohorts comprising SBHCs and CSHMHs (be on the lookout for partnership opportunities Spring 2019);
  • Facilitate a Community of Practice for state agencies and state-level organizations to accelerate and spread innovation and improvement in quality care, best business practices, and policies to support school health services sustainability and growth;
  • Provide technical assistance to SBHCs, CSMHSs, and schools not participating in CoIIN cohorts, encouraging adoption of CoIIN-generated strategies and innovations;
  • Integrate contemporary and emerging child and adolescent behavioral health topics, issues and conditions (e.g., adverse childhood experiences, opioid use) and emerging practices (e.g., telehealth, trauma-informed practices, restorative justice, social/emotional learning) in performance measure refinement, screening tools, implementation guidance, webinar series, and resources; and
  • Support states to effectively assess and address social determinants of health in school-based health services.

Currently, the states of Rhode Island, Indiana, Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Arizona are working in our national Collaborative Innovation and Improvement Network (CoIIN) to improve school health services.

As part of the NQI, the NCSMH has developed the National School Mental Health Census and Performance Measures, which are available through the SHAPE System at www.theshapesystem.com.

Publication about school mental health performance measurement:
Connors, E. H., Stephan, S. H., Lever, N., Ereshefsky, S., Mosby, A., & Bohnenkamp, J. (2016). A national initiative to advance school mental health performance measurement in the US. Advances in School Mental Health Promotion9(1), 50–69. https://doi.org/10.1080/1754730X.2015.1123639

Contact:

Shawn Orenstein, sorenstein@som.umaryland.edu

National Center for Safe & Supportive Learning Environments

Project Staff:

  • Sharon Hoover, PhD, Principal Investigator
  • Nancy Lever, PhD, Co-Principal Investigator
  • Brittany Patterson, PhD, Faculty Resource Specialist

Funding Source: 

Department of Education (DOE)

Project Partners:

American Institutes for Research

Project Description:

The National Center for School Mental Health (NCSMH) has partnered with American Institutes for Research (AIR) to provide technical assistance to federally funded Promoting Student Resilience, Elementary and Secondary School Counseling, and Project PREVENT grantees. The primary purpose of these projects is to build and increase the capacity of local education agencies to address the comprehensive behavioral and mental health needs of students in communities exposed to trauma.

Contact:

Nancy Lever, nlever@som.umaryland.edu

Maryland Early Intervention Program (EIP)

Project Staff:

  • Sharon Hoover, PhD, Outreach and Education Co-Leader
  • Nancy Lever, PhD, Outreach and Education Co-Leader
  • Larraine Bernstein, MS, Outreach and Training Project Manager
  • Brittney Patterson, PhD, Outreach and Education Mental Health Clinician Consultant
  • Taneisha Carter, BA, Research Assistant

Funding Source: 

Maryland Department of Health, Behavioral Health Administration

Project Partners:

University of Maryland Medical System, University of Maryland School of Medicine, University of Maryland Baltimore County

Project Description:

The National Center for School Mental Health (NCSMH) leads the Outreach and Education efforts for EIP which emphasizes teaching providers how to identify signs of clinical high risk and early psychosis, familiarizing them with relevant evidence-based practices, and providing ample ways to refer individuals for further consultation and treatment. These efforts span settings and providers who serve the range of age groups that can be impacted by clinical high risk and early psychosis, including but not limited to intermediate and secondary schools (middle school and high school), higher education (community college, university/college), advocacy groups, and behavioral and medical treatment settings. The two main foci for the outreach and education team include: 1) training around early psychosis/risk for psychosis and the importance of early identification; and 2) outreach about available Maryland EIP clinical services.

Contact:

Larraine Bernstein, lbernste@som.umaryland.edu

State Opioid Response-ACRA

Program Staff: 

  • Sharon Hoover, PhD, Principal Investigator
  • Nancy Lever, PhD, Co-Principal Investigator
  • Melissa Ambrose, LSCW-C, Project Coordinator & MD State A-CRA Trainer

Funder:

SAMHSA

Program Description:

The Adolescent Community Reinforcement Approach (A-CRA) is an evidence-based behavioral intervention that seeks to replace environmental contingencies that have supported alcohol or drug use with pro-social behaviors. Clinicians assume a flexible approach to reducing adolescent substance use by choosing from among 19 different A-CRA procedures that address such areas as problem-solving skills, communication skills, and relapse prevention.  In addition to the full 15 hour training, we also offer a modified 1 day training.

Contact:

Melissa Ambrose: mambrose@som.umaryland.edu

 

State Opioid Response-Student Assistance Program

Program Staff: 

  • Sharon Hoover, PhD, Principal Investigator
  • Nancy Lever, PhD, Director of Training
  • Melissa Ambrose, MSW, Project Manager and Trainer
  • Janice Mace, LSCW-C, Project Coordinator
  • Jennifer Cox, MSW, Trainer
  • Kelly Willis, MSW, Trainer
  • Taneisha Carter, BA, Research Assistant

Program Partners:

Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, Behavioral Health Administration and Maryland State Department of Education

Program Description:

This project seeks to build upon a foundation of Student Support Teams (SSTs) in schools to enhance training to better equip school staff to prevent student substance use, and to identify, intervene, and refer students with Substance Use Disorders (SUDs), including Opioid Use Disorders (OUDs), to appropriate treatment.  To achieve this effort two evidence-based trainings are being made available:

  1. Screening and Brief Intervention (SBI): This training is available to all middle and high school nurses and school counselors or other designated SST members.  The purpose of this training is to enhance their capacity to identify, support, and refer as needed students with substance use concerns. Trainees will learn the skills of substance use screening, brief intervention, and referral to treatment in 3 engaging one-on-one simulations with a student. 
  2. Botvin LifeSkills Training (LST) is a substance abuse prevention program proven to reduce the risks of alcohol, tobacco, drug abuse, and violence by targeting the major social and psychological factors that promote the initiation of substance use and other risky behaviors.   Botvin LifeSkills can be implemented at the elementary, middle and high school level in the classroom or with small groups.  This training is available to school counselors, health educators or other designated SST members.

Contact:

Melissa Ambrose, mambrose@som.umaryland.edu

 

Youth Care Coordination Professional Development (YCC)

Project Staff: 

  • Nancy Lever, PhD, Principal Investigator
  • Cindy Schaeffer, PhD, Co-Investigator
  • Sharon Hoover, PhD, Faculty Consultant and 3C Lead  
  • Brittany Patterson, PhD, Faculty Trainer
  • Melissa Ambrose, MSW, 3C Online Resource Liaison
  • Larraine Bernstein, MS, Resource and Materials Lead

Funding Source: 

Office of Mental Health/Core Service Agency of Harford County

Project Partners: 

Behavioral Health Administration

Project description: 

The National Center for School Mental Health (NCSMH) team is supporting the Maryland Department of Health, Behavioral Health Administration in advancing and disseminating a comprehensive package of knowledge and best practices in youth care coordination to care coordinators and supervisors, as well as behavioral health professionals throughout Maryland.  Training content was informed by and developed through a collaborative process that meaningfully engaged experienced care coordinators and mental health professionals. The series of 17 modules is intended for care coordinators, those supervising care coordinators, administrators, behavioral health providers working with youth care coordinators, and other professionals wishing to increase their knowledge about youth care coordination.  The NCSMH provides ongoing technical assistance and consultation as needed through in-person meetings, live trainings, webinars, and conference calls and will develop resources to support comprehensive training related to youth care coordination.

Contact:

Melissa Ambrose, mambrose@som.umaryland.edu

Smart Choices (Gambling Prevention in Schools)

Project Staff:

  • Brittany Patterson, PhD, Principal Investigator

Project Description:

In partnership with the Maryland Center of Excellence on Problem Gambling, the NCSMH is implementing and evaluating a youth gambling prevention program in several Baltimore City schools for students in grades 5, 7, 8 and 12.

Contact:

Brittany Patterson, bpatterson@som.umaryland.edu