An Unprecedented Collaboration to Address Student Mental Health

School-Based Mental Health: School and Community Partnerships
By Josh Godinez, CASC President
To answer the call of addressing the rise in student mental health issues, California lawmakers
have been introducing legislation and floating ideas. Two legislative approaches to the problem
began to formulate: those that believe investing in wellness centers on school campuses is one
way of meeting student mental health; and the second is to build an infrastructure through
Managed Care systems. While more mental health services are needed, CASC is cautiously
approaching these ideas to make sure school counselors' high student ratios are considered.
Managed Care providers are supporting this initiative and we know that if successful, it will
provide them with a dedicated client base of California's students - not to mention it will be
financially beneficial.

These factors brought CASC, along with the California Association of School Psychologists
(CASP), and the California Association of School Social Workers (CASSW), together to write a
joint position statement. This level of partnership and agreement is historic and we thank the
leaders from CASP and CASSW for their commitment to this effort. Dr. Aubrey Uresti and Dr.
Loretta Whitson represented CASC in researching and leading the team in this effort. When
you have a moment, I encourage you to read the School-Based Mental Health: School and
. It addresses the components of third-party
contracts, HIPAA/FERPA considerations, legalities, including a standing law that requires Pupil
Personnel Service Credential Holders to supervise clinical practitioners and more. It was
strongly supported by the Boards of Directors for all three cooperating organizations. This is not
our first partnership endeavour. As you may recall, a team from CASC, CASP and CASSW
published a document explaining our collaborative roles in school. You can access that
document here.