Mental Health Resources for Staff
Schools are an ideal place to promote knowledge, skills and habits for mental wellness, and to notice and respond early when there may be a concern.
Administrators, educators and support staff play a key role in the wellbeing of all students and staff by fostering mentally healthy schools and classrooms. Creating caring environments where all people feel welcomed, included, understand their role and can engage in everyday practices to support well-being foster relationships and create a safe climate for learning and working.
Resources for staff
Supporting a mental health concern
Note: It is important to know that it is normal for everyone to experience distress and mental health challenges from time-to-time. Learning how to accept some distress and discomfort can be an important aspect of well-being.
Meanwhile, children and youth can experience mental health concerns that require more support. We all have a role to play in helping our students. We must stand up for them.
Take time to:
- Observe changes in the student that are causing concern
- Speak with others to gain a better understanding (e.g. student, parents, other teachers and administrator)
- Share these observations with other staff (e.g. ISSP, school success, contact, guidance counsellor,) who can work with you to support the student's wellbeing – a team approach also includes parents/guardians
- Monitor whether supports are helping
- Monitoring and documenting the frequency, duration, and intensity of the student's concerns can help determine the seriousness and level of support required.
Resource: Getting Help for One Desk - top reference and tips for talking about mental health concerns. View Supporting Minds for supporting students with mental health concerns at school.
If concerns are more serious or do not improve with the above problem solving and support further supports are available in school and in the community.
Pathway to Support – In School
- The school team may decide that it would be helpful to seek the support of the In-School Resource Committee (ISRC).
- The ISRC is comprised of the in school team as well as a special education resource teacher, social worker, speech and language pathologist and psycho-educational consultant.
- Each school has their own process for referral to the ISRC. Your administrator or ISSP will guide you.
- With parent permission, the student's strengths and challenges are discussed along with the strategies that have been implemented to date.
- Recommendations will be made by the ISRC members, which may include a referral to one of the PSSP members, a case conference, further social-emotional strategies and/or referral to community resources.
- Recommendations are followed up on, and monitored
- The ISRC welcomes return visits for further support if needed.
Pathway to Support – Community
- PSSP can provide schools and parents with community resources that support students' needs
- Peel Children's Centre is the lead mental health agency for children and youth for Peel. See www.WhereToStart.cato access mental health services for children and youth in Peel.
- For a quick guide to other mental health resources, visit bit.ly/PeelYouthResources.
The following websites may be helpful as you search out strategies and information to support student well-being: