Updated April 2012
School-based mental health services are provided by a wide range of professionals — counselors, psychologists, clinical social workers, marriage and family therapists, and psychiatrists. Their services include prevention-focused activities to create a healthy school environment, selective interventions with groups of students whose circumstances place them at higher risk for emotional or behavioral health problems, as well as diagnosis and treatment of individual students with specific health needs. Areas of particular interest within the school-based mental health field include school safety, prevention initiatives, substance abuse treatment, and financing mental health services.
Atkins MS, Hoagwood KE, Kutash K, Seidman E. Toward the integration of education and mental health in schools. Adm Policy Ment Health. 2010;37(1-2):40-47.
Adelman HS, Taylor L. Mental health in schools and public health. Public Health Rep. 2006;121(3):294-298.
Madrid PA, Grant R, Reilly MJ, Redlener NB. Challenges in meeting immediate emotional needs: short-term impact of a major disaster on children’s mental health: building resiliency in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Pediatrics. 2006;117(5 Pt 3):S448-S453.
Paternite CE. School-based mental health programs and services: overview and introduction to the special issue. J Abnorm Child Psychol. 2005;33(6):657-663.
Taras HL. School-based mental health services. Pediatrics. 2004;113(6):1839-1845.
Costello-Wells B, McFarland L, Reed J, Walton K. School-based mental health clinics. J Child Adolesc Psychiatr Nurs. 2003;16(2):60-70.
Slade EP. The relationship between school characteristics and the availability of mental health and related health services in middle and high schools in the United States. J Behav Health Serv Res. 2003;30(4):382-392.
Noam GC, Hermann CA. Where education and mental health meet: developmental prevention and early intervention in schools. Dev Psychopathol. 2002;14(4):861-875.
Weist MD, Lowie JA, Flaherty LT, Pruitt D. Collaboration among the education, mental health, and public health systems to promote youth mental health. Psychiatr Serv. 2001;52(10):1348-1351.
Weist MD, Proeshcer E, Prodente C, Ambrose MG, Waxman RP. Mental health, health, and education staff working together in schools. Child Adolesc Psychiatr Clin N Am. 2001;10(1):33-43,viii.
Mark Greiner, Gail Nickerson, Steven Rosenberg: A Rosenberg and Associates. State policy context for school-based health centers with special focus on development of mental health and dental health services. http://www.healthinschools.org/Health-in-Schools/Health-Services/School-Based-Health-Centers/Financing/State-Policy-Context-for-School-Based-Health-Centers.aspx. Published 2001. Accessed April 19, 2012.
Adelsheim S, Carrillo K, Coletta E. Developing school mental health in a rural state. The New Mexico school mental health initiative. Child Adolesc Psychiatr Clin N Am. 2001;10(1):151-159, x.
Department of Health and Human Services, U.S. Public Health Service. Report of the Surgeon General’s conference on children’s mental health: a national action agenda. www.surgeongeneral.gov/cmh/childreport.htm. Published September 2000. Accessed April 16, 2012.
Armbruster P, Andrews E, Couenhoven J, Blau G. Collision or collaboration? School-based health services meet managed care. Clin Psychol Rev. 1999;19(2):221-237.
Kubiszyn T. Integrating health and mental health services in schools: psychologists collaborating with primary care providers. Clin Psychol Rev. 1999;19(2):179-198.
Adelman HS, Taylor L. System reform to address barriers to learning: beyond school-linked services and full service schools. Am J Orthopsychiatry. 1997;67(3):408-421.
Taylor L, Adelman HS. Mental health in schools: promising directions for practice. Adolesc Med.1997;7(2):303-337.
Adelman HS. Restructuring education support services & integrating community resources: Beyond the full service school model. School Psych Rev. 1996;25(4):431-445.
Flaherty LT, Weist MD, Warner BS. School-based mental health services in the United States: history, current models, and needs. Community Ment Health J. 1996;32(4):341-352.
Adelman HS, Taylor L. School-based mental health: toward a comprehensive approach. J Ment Health Adm. 1993;20(1):32-45.
Adelman HS, Taylor L. Mental health facets of the school-based health center movement: need and opportunity for research and development. J Ment Health Adm. 1991;18(3):272-283.
Walter HJ, Gouze K, Cicchetti C, et al. A pilot demonstration of comprehensive mental health services in inner-city public schools. J Sch Health. 2011;81(4):185-193. doi:10.1111/j.1746-1561.2010.00578.x.
Department for Education. Me and my school: findings from the national evaluation of targeted mental health in schools 2008-2011. https://www.education.gov.uk/publications/eOrderingDownload/DFE-RR177.pdf. Published November 2011. Accessed April 9, 2012.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Mental health in the United States: health care and well being of children with chronic emotional, behavioral, or developmental problems—United States, 2001. MMWR Morb Mortality Wkly Rep. 2005;54(39):985-989.
Perkins HJ, Montford CR. The impact of violence in schools: a case study on the role of school-based health centers. Nurs Clin North Am. 2005;40(4):671-679,ix.
Bruns EJ, Walrath C, Glass-Siegal M, Weist MD. School-based mental health services in Baltimore: association with school climate and special education referrals. Behav Modif. 2004;28(4):491-512.
DeSocio J, Hootman J. Children’s mental health and school success. J Sch Nurs. 2004;20(4):189-196.
Evans SW, Axelrod J, Langberg JM. Efficacy of a school-based treatment program for middle school youth with ADHD: pilot data. Behav Modif. 2004; 28(4):528-547. doi:10.1177/0145445503259504.
Koppelman J. Children with mental disorders: making sense of their needs and the systems that help them. NHPF Issue Brief. 2004; 4(799):1-24.
Mufson L, Dorta KP, Wickramaratne P, Nomura Y, Olfson M, Weissman MN. A randomized effectiveness trial of interpersonal psychotherapy in depressed adolescents. Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2004;61(6):577-584.
Pastore DR, Techow B. Adolescent school-based health care: a description of two sites in their 20th year of services. Mt Sinai J Med. 2004;71(3):191-196.
Vernberg EM, Jacobs AK, Nyre JE, Puddy RW, Roberts MC. Innovative treatment for children with serious emotional disturbance: preliminary outcomes for a school-based intensive mental health program. J Clin Child Adolesc Psychol. 2004;33(2):359-365.
Juszczak L, Melinkovich P, Kaplan D. Use of health and mental health services by adolescents across multiple delivery sites. J Adolesc Health. 2003;32(6 Suppl):108-118.
Servaty-Seib HL, Peterson J, Spang D. Notifying individual students of a death loss: practical recommendations for schools and school counselors. Death Stud. 2003;27(2):167-186.
Stein BD, Jaycox LH, Kataoka SH, et al. A mental health intervention for schoolchildren exposed to violence: a randomized controlled trial. JAMA. 2003;290(5):603-611. doi:10.1001/jama.290.5.603.
Young TL, Ireson C. Effectiveness of school-based telehealth care in urban and rural elementary schools. Pediatics. 2003;112(5):1088-1094.
Blais R, Breton JJ, Fournier M, St-Georges M, Berthiaume C. Are mental health services for children distributed according to needs? Can J Psychiatry. 2003;48(3):176-186.
Fertman CI, Ross JL. Differences in the use of a school mental health program in secondary schools. Am J Health Behav. 2003;27(2):146-155.
Kataoka SH, Stein BD, Jaycox LH, et al. A school-based mental health program for traumatized Latino immigrant children. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2003;42(3):311-318.
Pfefferbaum B, Sconzo GM, Flynn BW, et al. Case finding and mental health services for children in the aftermath of the Oklahoma City bombing. J Behav Health Serv Res. 2003;30(2):215-227.
Slade EP. Effects of school-based mental health programs on mental health service use by adolescents at school and in the community. Ment Health Serv Res. 2002;4(3):151-166. doi:10.1023/A:1019711113312.
Teagle SE. Parental problem recognition and child mental health service use. Ment Health Serv Res. 2002;4(4):257-266.
Cuffe SP, Waller JL, Addy CL, et al. A longitudinal study of adolescent mental health service use. J Behav Health Serv Res. 2001; 28(10):1-11.
Masia CL, Klein RG, Storch EA, Corda B. School-based behavioral treatment for social anxiety disorder in adolescents: result of a pilot study. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry, 2001;40(7):780-786.
Mason MJ, Wood TA. Clinical mental health training within a multidisciplinary school-based health clinic. J Health Sol Policy. 2000;11(3):45-65.
Rones M, Hoagwood K. School-Based Mental Health Services: A Research Review. Clin Child Fam Psychol Rev. 2000;3(4):223-241.
Weist MD, Nabors LA, Myers CP, Armbruster P. Evaluation of expanded school mental health programs. Community Ment Health J. 2000;36(4):395-411.
Armbruster P, Lichtman J. Are school based mental health services effective? Evidence from 36 inner city schools. Community Ment Health J. 1999; 35(6):493-504.
Evans, SW. Mental health services in schools: utilization, effectiveness, and consent. Clin Psychol Rev. 1999; 9(2):165-178.
Hawkins JD, Catalano RF, Kosterman R, Abbott R, Hill KG. Preventing adolescent health-risk behaviors by strengthening protection during childhood. Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 1999;153(3)226-234.
Lewinsohn PM, Clarke GN. Psychosocial treatments for adolescent depression. Clin Psychol Rev. 1999;19(3):329-342.
Weist MD, Myers CP, Hastings E, Ghuman H, Han YL. Psychosocial functioning of youth receiving mental health services in the schools versus community mental health. Community Ment Health J. 1999; 35(1):69-81.
Jepson L, Juszczak L, Fisher M. Mental health care in a high school-based health service. Adolescence. 1998;33(129):1-15.
Armbruster P, Gerstein SH, Fallan T. Bridging the gap between service need and service utilization: a school-based mental health program. Community Ment Health J. 1997;33(3):199-211.
Kcendall J. Peterson G. A school-based mental health clinic for adolescent mothers. J Child Adolesc Psychiatr Nurs. 1996;9(2):7-17.
Leaf JP, Alegria M, Cohen P, et al. Mental health service use in the community and schools: results from the Four-Community MECA Study. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 1996;37(7):889-897.
Weist MD, Paskewitz DA, Warner BS, et al. Treatment outcome of school-based mental health services for urban teenagers. Community Ment Health J. 1996;32(2):149-157.
Adelman HS. Clinical psychology: beyond psychopathology and clinical interventions. Clin Psychol. 1995;2(1):28-44.
Burns B, Costello EJ, Angold A, Tweed D. Children’s mental health service use across service sectors. Health Aff, 1995;14:147-159.
Wassef A, Ingham D, Collins ML, Mason G. In search of effective programs to address students’ emotional distress and behavioral problems. Part I: defining the Problem. Adolescence. 1995;30(119):523-538.
Wassef A, Collins ML, Ingham D, Mason G. In search of effective programs to address students’ emotional distress and behavioral problems. Part II: Critique of school- and community-based programs. Adolescence. 1995; 30(120):757-777.
Farie AM, Cowen EL, Smith M. The development and implementation of a rural consortium program to provide early, preventive school mental health services. Community Ment Health J. 1986;22(2):94-103.
Weist MD, Mellin EA, Chambers KL, Lever NA, Haber D, Blaber C. Challenges to collaboration in school mental health and strategies for overcoming them. J Sch Health. 2012;82(2):97-105. doi:10.1111/j.1746-1561.2011.00672.x.
Langley AK, Nadeem E, Kataoka SH, Stein BD, Jaycox LH. Evidence-based mental health programs in schools: barriers and facilitators of successful implementation. School Ment Health. 2010;2(3):105-113.
Krista Kutash, Albert J Duchnowski, Nancy Lynn: University of South Florida, The Louis de la Parte Florida Mental Health Institute, Department of Child & Family Studies., Research and Training Center for Children’s Mental Health. School-based Mental Health: An Empirical Guide for Decision-makers. http://rtckids.fmhi.usf.edu/rtcpubs/study04/default.cfm. Published April 2006. Accessed April 19, 2012.
Susan Foster, Mary Rollefson, Teresa Doksum, Denise Noonan, Gail Robinson, Judith Teich: Center for Mental Health Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. School Mental Health Services in the United States, 2002–2003. http://store.samhsa.gov/product/School-Mental-Health-Services-in-the-United-States-2002-2003/SMA05-4068. Published January 2005. Accessed April 19, 2012.
Baggish R, Hardcastle S. Schools and mental health: an evolving partnership. Conn Med. 2005;69(9):535-539.
Acosta OM, Weist MD, Lopez FA, Shafer ME, Pizarro LJ. Assessing the psychosocial and academic needs of latino youth to inform the development of school-based programs. Behav Modif. 2004;28(4):579-595. doi:10.1177/014544503259499.
Nabors LA, Leff SS, Power TJ. Quality improvement activities and expanded school mental health services. Behav Modif. 2004;28(4):596-616.
Harrison TW. Adolescent homosexuality and concerns regarding disclosure. J Sch Health. 2003;73(3):107-112.
Armbruster P. The administration of school-based mental health services. Child Adolesc Psychiatr Clin N Am. 2002;11(1):23-41.
Haynes NM. Addressing students’ social and emotional needs: the role of mental health teams in schools. J Health Soc Policy. 2002;16(1-2):109-123.
Grier R, Morris L, Taylor L. Assessment strategies for school-based mental health counseling. J Sch Health. 2001;71(9):476-479.
Adelman HS, Taylor L, Bradley B, Lewis KD. Mental health in schools: expanded opportunities for school nurses. J Sch Nursing. 1997;13(3):6-12.
Han SS, Weiss B. Sustainability of teacher implementation of school-based mental health programs. J Abnorm Child Psychol. 2005;33(6):665-679.
Larson MJ, Miller K, Sharma S, Manderscheid R. Children’s mental health services in fee-for-service Medicaid. Health Care Financ Rev. 2004;26(1):5-22.
Roland Sturm: RAND. The costs of covering mental health and substance abuse care at the same level as medical care in private insurance plans. http://www.rand.org/pubs/testimonies/CT180.html. Published 2001. Accessed April 18, 2012.
June Gibbs Brown: US Department of Health and Human Services. Office of the Inspector General. Mandatory managed care: children’s access to Medicaid mental health services. oig.hhs.gov/oei/reports/oei-04-97-00344.pdf . Published January 2000. Accessed April 18, 2012.
Andrew L Bundy, Victoria Wegener: The Finance Project. Maximizing Medicaid funding to support health and mental health services for school-age children and youth. http://184.108.40.206/publications/brief5.htm. Published October 2000. Accessed April 18, 2012.
American Academy of Pediatrics. Insurance coverage of mental health and substance abuse services for children and adolescents: a consensus statement. Pediatrics. 2000;106(4):860-862.
Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law. Making sense of Medicaid for children with serious emotional disturbance. http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&ved=0CCcQFjAA&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.bazelon.org%2FLinkClick.aspx%3Ffileticket%3Dkz5bUO8S1yM%253D%26tabid%3D104&ei=LSOPT-CiCIb06AGGn6z7Dg&usg=AFQjCNEshzEvzEhMmUbQ6KA0vmuavknwiw. Published September 1999. Accessed April 18, 2012.
Kataoka S, Jaycox LH, Wong M, et al. Effects on school outcomes in low-income minority youth: preliminary findings from a community-partnered study of a school trauma intervention. Ethn Dis. 2011;21(3 Suppl 1):S1-71-77.
Durlak JA, Weissberg RP, Dymnicki AB, Taylor RD, Shellinger KB. The impact of enhancing students’ social and emotional learning: a meta-analysis of school-based universal interventions. Child Dev. 2011;82(1):405-432.
Dowdy E, Ritchey K, Kamphaus RW. School-based screening: a population-based approach to inform and monitor children’s mental health needs. School Ment Health. 2010;2(4):166-176.
Walker SC, Kerns AR, Bruns EJ, Cosgrove TJ. Impact of school-based health center use on academic outcomes. J Adolesc Health. 2010;46(3):251-257.
Wyman PA, Cross W, Brown CH, et al. Intervention to strengthen emotional self-regulation in children with emerging mental health problems: proximal impact on school behavior. J Abnorm Child Psychol. 2010;38(5):707-720.
Institute of Medicine of the National Academis. Preventing Mental, Emotional, and Behavioral Disorders among Young People: Progress and Possibilities. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press, 2009. http://www.iom.edu/Reports/2009/Preventing-Mental-Emotional-and-Behavioral-Disorders-Among-Young-People-Progress-and-Possibilities.aspx. Published March 12, 2009. Accessed April 19, 2012.
Payton J, Weissberg RP, Durlak JA, et al; Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning. The positive impact of social and emotional learning (SEL) for kindergarten to eight-grade students: findings from three scientific reviews. www.lpfch.org/sel/PackardES-REV.pdf . Published December 2008. Accessed February 17, 2012.
Hoagwood KE, Olin SS, Kerker BD, et al. Empirically based school interventions targeted at academic and mental health functioning. J Emot Behav Disord. 2007;15(2):66-92.
Rimm-Kaufman SE, Fan X, Chiu Y, You W. The contribution of the responsive classroom approach on children’s academic achievements: results from a three-year long longitudinal study. J Sch Psychol. 2007;45(4):401-427.
Linares LO, Rosbruch N, Stern MB, et al. Developing cognitive-social-emotional competencies to enhance academic learning. Psyhol Sch. 2005;42(4):405-417.
Prian N. Prevention of eating disorders: a review of outcome evaluation research. Isr J Psychiatry Relat Sci. 2005;42(3):172-177.
Sinclair MF, Christenson SL, Thurlow ML. Promoting school completion of urban secondary youth with emotional or behavioral disabilities. Except Child. 2005;71(4):465-482.
Aseltine RH Jr, DeMartino R. An outcome evaluation of the SOS Suicide Prevention Program. Am J Public Health. 2004;94(3):446-451.
Merry S, McDowell H, Wild CJ, Bir J, Cunliffe R. A randomized placebo-controlled trial of a school-based depression prevention program. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2004;43(5):538-547.
Catalano RF, Mazza JJ, Harachi TW, Abbott RD, et al. Raising healthy children through enhancing social development in elementary schools: results after 1.5 years. J Sch Psychol. 2003;41(2):143-164.
Flay BR, Allred CG. Long-term effects of the positive action program. Am J Health Behav. 2003;27(supplement 1):S6-S21.
Jones D, Dodge KA, Foster EM, Nix R. Early identification of children at risk for costly mental health service use. Prev Sci. 2002;3(4):247-256.
Noam GG, Hermann CA. Where education and mental health meet: developmental prevention and early intervention in schools. Dev Psychopathol. 2002;4(4):861-875.
Flay BR, Allred CG, Ordway N. Effects of the positive action program on achievement and discipline: two matched-control comparisons. Prev Sci. 2001;2(2):71-89.
Greenberg MT, Domitrovich C, Bumbarger B: Prevention Research Center for the Promotion of Human Developmen, College of Health and Human Service, Pennsylvania State University. Preventing mental disorders in school-age children: a review of the effectiveness of prevention programs. http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&ved=0CCcQFjAA&url=http%3A%2F%2Fprevention.psu.edu%2Fpubs%2Fdocuments%2Fmentaldisordersfullreport.pdf&ei=bk-MT6mrN6Lz0gGYv9jUCQ&usg=AFQjCNERojAyIVKfPCk3PUEA0CYEk8EMLA Updated June 2000. Accessed April 16, 2012.
Hawkins JD, Catalano RF, Kosterman R, Abbot R, Hill KG. Preventing adolescent health-risk behaviors by strengthening protection during childhood. Arch Pediatric Adolescent Med. 1999;153(3):226-324.
Witt JC, Vanderheyden A, Penton C. Prevention of common mental health problems among adolescents: national and local best practices in school-based health centers. J La State Med Soc. 1999;151(12):631-638.
Abbott RD, O’Donnell J, Hawkins JD, Hill KG, Kosterman R, Catalano RF. Changing teaching practices to promote achievement and bonding to school. Am J Orthopsychiatry. 1998;68(4):542-552.
Perry CL. Models for effective prevention. J Adolesc Health. 1992; 13(5):355-363.