With natural and man-made crisis events increasing in frequency, schools and school mental health providers are being called upon to meet both the physical safety and social-emotional needs of students following exposure to a crisis event. Part of that readiness is a well-developed crisis plan combined with healing-centered and resilience-promoting policies and programming. Crisis readiness is both a school- and community-wide imperative that ideally is part of a wider trauma-informed approach already used in many schools. It requires dedicated planning and intentional implementation for which school mental health providers are particularly well suited. Advanced planning for crisis readiness and response focuses on building comprehensive plans in collaboration with school and community partners while working to build individual and community-wide resilience through trauma-informed practices. While this training focuses primarily on early intervention, it addresses both single incident crises and ongoing crises (e.g., community violence), and therefore emphasizes the development of responsive systems and procedures that are iterative and create opportunities for ongoing learning and improvement. This training will review best practices for planning and highlight resources that will help school mental health providers build their toolboxes for crisis readiness and response.
- Understand and identify the types of collective trauma students in their school may face.
- Increase awareness of trauma-informed and healing-centered strategies that promote individual and community resilience.
- Identify resources and training opportunities that will aid in the development of crisis response plans that address the social-emotional wellbeing of students prior to the onset of a collective trauma occurrence.
- Promote cross-state networking and shared learning about navigating toward recovery during traumatic events.
Berre Burch, Ph.D., is the clinical director at the Children's Bureau of New Orleans where she oversees clinical programs that serve approximately 400 children, youth, and their families each year. A school psychologist by training, Dr. Burch has spent her career providing direct clinical services and systems-level consultation and support to address issues of childhood trauma. In her current role with the Children's Bureau, Dr. Burch partners with schools and other youth-serving organizations like courts, child advocacy centers, and workforce development programs to embed and deliver evidence-based, trauma-informed care in community settings. Dr. Burch earned her doctorate at Tulane University with a specialization in Trauma-Informed School Psychology and completed her clinical internship with the National Center for School Mental Health at the University of Maryland Medical Center.