System of Care Grant

The System of Care Office of the White Mountains Regional School District sponsors Inservices to aid in Identifying Students at Risk

On Tuesday, June 19th the System of Care Office of the White Mountains Regional School District sponsored a day-long inservice for faculty and staff of SAU 36 as well as hosting faculty and staff of the Littleton School District/SAU 84. We recognize that teachers no longer simply teach a subject but rather teach the whole student including addressing the social and emotional issues that they may be facing.

Two Sessions Offered

Trauma Informed Training strives to create Trauma Sensitive Schools by using relationships to promote learning and resilience. This session was offered to SAU 36 faculty and staff of pre-K through grade 5, along with pre-K through grade 12 staff from SAU 84.  Schools across the country are adopting a “trauma-sensitive” approach in order to effectively educate students who have been exposed to adverse experiences. The field of “social neuroscience” draws from vast disciplines to explain how we have evolved in the context of interpersonal relationships through attachment and group cohesion, and how we have subsequently developed the capacity to shape the brains of those with “whom interact and connect. This presentation will describe how educators can use our knowledge of interpersonal neurobiology to create classrooms and student relationships that maximize growth and learning. Participants will be able to employ trauma sensitive principles, practices, and procedures to address the impact of trauma on learners and increase their students’ ability to succeed in the school environment. The presenter  for this session was Jenessa Deleault, Psy.D. A Clinical Psychologist, and affiliate of Dr. Cassie Yackley’s, who works with children, adolescents, families, and adults. Her background and training includes specialization in young children, although she has experience working with children and teenagers of all ages. Dr. Deleault is trained in Child Parent Psychotherapy, an evidenced based practice for children ages 0-6 who have experienced trauma. Dr. Deleault has experience working with children and families with a variety of presenting concerns including depression, anxiety, ADHD, academic challenges, autism spectrum disorders, history of traumatic experiences and regulation difficulties. Dr. Deleault has experience with mental health consultation services to school districts and in primary care settings, strengthening her capacity to coordinate with systems and environments to best support children and their families.  She has worked to help school staff understand trauma and its impact on development, learning, and behavior through proving presentations and consultation.

Youth Mental Health First Aid (YMFHA) was also offered for faculty and staff of the White Mountains Regional School District that support  youth in grades 6—12. It is important to our community to offer supports and assistance to our youth and young adults. Our objective is to provide knowledge to all adults working with adolescent youth about the warning signs and symptoms of mental health challenges. Youth Mental Health First Aid is an in-person training that teaches you how to help people developing a mental illness or in a crisis. Over 200 north country members including staff in SAU 7/SAU 3 and SAU 36 have been trained in Youth Mental Health First Aid and now have the skills to help an adolescent (age 12-18) who is experiencing a mental health or addictions challenge or is in crisis. Topics covered include anxiety, depression, substance use, disorders in which psychosis may occur, disruptive behavior disorders (including AD/HD), and eating disorders. We have trainers in SAU 36 and neighboring districts who are able to offer the training to the community as well as other school staff. The YMHFA instructors for this training included Jennifer Noyes, Bob Thompson, Kate McKinnon, Jenn Sumner, Joanne Dickson, Brandon Pare, and Patrice Andres, training approximately 120 SAU 36 staff members. Upon completion, participants will better understand the signs of mental illness, the impact of mental illness and substance use disorders, a 5-step action plan to assess a situation as well as local resources and where to turn for help.  Each participant will receive a certificate of completion and be identified as a youth mental health first aider.

Kate Clark, Jenessa Deleault, Kelly Dussault
Picture of large group in Trauma Informed Training Inservice