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Expanding and Building Capacity for Staff to Provide Mental Health Services

Expanding and Building Capacity for Staff to Provide Mental Health Services

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Resources for expanding and building the capacity of school staff to provide mental health services to better support students are available. Click on the individual titles below for program descriptions and contact information.



Adult Mental Health Literacy (available now)

Youth Mental Health First Aid is a free, evidence-based mental health literacy program for adults working with adolescents. It is available in virtual, blended, and in-person formats (availability of the blended and in-person subject to safe pandemic conditions), to school staff and community members.

Schools, districts, and community organizations interested in a training can request one through the Youth Mental Health First Aid website. Certified trainers and all materials required for participants are provided.

Contact Beth Herman with any questions.

Restorative Practices Connections and Coaching (available now)

Even though we aren’t having in-person training until further notice, you still can keep the focus of a Positive School Climate and strengthen School Community by using Restorative Practices (RP) and joining the new RP Connections! RP Connections is a support system for educators to use that will help keep RP alive and growing in their educational practice.

Who can become part of a robust RP community of practice or use the RP Connections? School teams, individual teachers, administrators, and all pupil services staff either already trained or deeply interested in Restorative Practices. Services are available to public and private schools.

In this project you can request:

  • Join our community of practice on Restorative Practice
  • Coaching for application of practices and troubleshooting
  • Readiness Coaching and resources for implementation
  • Resources to further a school’s RP practice

Fill out the request for support and/or to join our Community of Practice. You will receive a personal contact when you complete the request from one of the RP Connections Coordinators; Christine Kleiman or Carol Bahrke to discuss further need or involvement.

Additional information on this project can be found on the  WISH Center Restorative Practices Connections web page

Correct Use of Personal Protective Equipment (available now)

The first of two training modules for both public and private school staff on the basics of COVID-19 and the correct use of PPE is available. This first module is designed for schools and districts to use as basic COVID-19 training for school staff. The target audience of this module is school nurses, health room assistants, paraeducators, teachers, secretaries, school administrators, custodians, and other school staff. The duration is approximately 10 minutes. Information covered includes how COVID-19 is transmitted, steps staff can take to protect themselves, what to do if staff have symptoms, and how to work with special student situations including when students are unable to wear face coverings and special communication situations. The module is closed captioned. There is no certificate of completion or documentation of completion. School districts may develop such tracking if they choose to do so.

The Department of Public Instruction (DPI) announces that a second COVID-19 related training module for school staff is now posted to the DPI School Health Services webpage. This training module entitled “PPE Awareness Training for Schools - COVID-19” is intended to instruct school staff on the purpose of, and in the proper selection and use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). This module was developed for the Department of Public Instruction by School Health Associates. 

Direct link to the module:

The link is also located on DPI’s COVID-19 Information for School Health Services webpage under both Guidance Documents and the Personal Protective Equipment dropdown tab.

Contact Louise Wilson with any questions.

Regional TA and Coaching for Comprehensive School-Based Mental Health, Trauma Sensitive Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) (available now)

Wisconsin Center for Resilient Schools

This is a statewide technical assistance and coaching network to support school and district teams in the systemic implementation of comprehensive school-based mental health systems and trauma-sensitive social and emotional learning. Resources will build adults' capacity to support students' mental health and skill development.

The center will be accessible starting in January, through the Wisconsin Safe and Healthy Schools Center. Schools and districts will be able to request a consultation, technical assistance, team implementation, coaching, and training through both a statewide request webpage and regional contacts.

The DPI will continue to offer technical assistance and consultation for school-based mental health, social and emotional learning, and trauma-sensitive schools.

For questions, please contact or

Peer-to-Peer Suicide Prevention (available now)

This funding will complement the Peer-to-Peer State Suicide Prevention Grants mandated through 2019 Act 83, Wis.Stat 115.366. Grant funds will be awarded in October 2020 and are available to all public, tribal and private schools that serve students in high school grades. The primary grant Peer-to-Peer funding is for up to $1,000 per high school peer-to-peer program. This secondary grant program provided by ESSER funding will be distributed to support schools with evidenced-based peer to peer programs such as Hope Squad and Sources of Strength.

The secondary grant program will be administered by the Wisconsin Safe and Healthy Schools Center ( High Schools awarded funding from the state peer-to-peer primary grants will be offered an application for further funding ranging from $900 to $3,000 per year. Information on the primary Peer-to-Peer Suicide Prevention Grants can be found on the DPI Peer-to-Peer Suicide Prevention Grants web page.

Reducing Mental Health Stigma in School Communities (available now)

Mental Health Stigma reduction toolkit uses evidence-based strategies for decreasing stigma in the school-community. It includes lessons that can be used with secondary students in a variety of settings, caregiver engagement materials, and a discussion guide and video to help educators examine their own stigma. Together, these toolkit materials can promote a resilient, hopeful, and inclusive school-community for all affected by mental health challenges.

The toolkit is available on the DPI Mental Health Literacy and Wellness Education page.

Contact Liz Krubsack with any questions.

Mental Health Referral Pathways Training Module (available now)

An online training module to complement existing DPI resources on developing and improving school mental health referral pathways is available. The module leads teams through establishing and improving the essential components of functional pathways, drawing on district examples, and provides practical tools and resources for implementation.

The module is posted on the DPI Mental Health Referral Pathways web page.

Contact Liz Krubsack with any questions.

Student Mental Health Literacy Curriculum (available now)

Mental health literacy includes the knowledge, attitudes, and skills needed to develop and maintain positive mental health, identify mental health challenges in self and others, reduce stigma, and seek appropriate help. These skills-based units of instruction include lessons for elementary, middle and high school students, and focus on developing the skills that students need to maintain mental health and wellbeing and recognize and support others who may be struggling.

The mental health literacy units and lessons are posted on the DPI Mental Health Literacy and Wellness Education web page.

Contact Liz Krubsack with any questions.