The Greenwoods Collaborative School Project (GCSP) started last year and is funded by a combination of private and community grants. The primary focus of this project is to improve access to mental health and substance abuse knowledge and services in the greater Litchfield county area. Towards this end, in August of 2016 the project director, Joel Behar, Ph.D. began the first phase of the project, which consisted of forming a collaborative team composed of the following individuals: Sherri Turner, Superintendent of Litchfield Schools; Julie Haggard, Director of Special Services at Litchfield Schools; Bob Berson, Ph.D., Litchfield Prevention Council member and Kelly Garden, Litchfield Prevention Council member.
The GCSP is currently working with the Litchfield and WAMOGO school districts. During the 2017/2018 academic year, Greenwoods staff will be spending up to one full day per week in the Litchfield school district. Students can access Greenwoods services with parental permission. Teachers and pupil personnel team members may refer students, or students may self-refer based on their age. The Greenwoods team will be able to provide clinical evaluations and referrals to a range of community resources for students, as well as take part in school-based support team meetings for students with complex needs.
Greenwoods staff will offer workshops for parents and can also offer similar workshop programs for students and staff. At its core, the strength of this collaborative project is in providing essential programs and services to those who need it most, in a practical, direct and easily accessed way.
The GCSP will be able to provide the following range of services:
- Evaluations, such as clinical, risk, and screening assessments
- Referrals to outside providers
- Collaboration with school-based providers
- Ability to receive on-site clinical supports during convenient times during or after the school day and within the school setting
- Quick response to concerns that require clinical or medical based intervention
- Parent forums
The benefit for students will be significant, specifically:
- Reduction of barriers to services by bringing community resources directly to children and teens
- Enhanced interagency collaboration to help students move forward more quickly and comprehensively
- Improved home/school/community connections
- Professional support for parents
School staff will benefit from this project as well, by providing enhanced support to problem solve difficult or complex cases with expert clinical consultation, when needed, In addition, the GCSP will significantly reduce the time it takes to access services with outside agencies and providers.