Building Capacity of School Personnel to Promote Positive Mental Health in Indigenous Children and Youth

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Please submit your registration form found on page four of this document to LaVonne at [email protected] or Sarah at [email protected].

Event Description

We are inviting you to participate in a multi-state initiative that will build capacity of school teams to promote positive mental health in children/youth throughout the school day using a multi-tiered approach. The training will occur January - May 2024. Specifically, Mountain Plains-MHTTC will build capacity of school personnel to support positive identity development emphasizing mental health promotion and prevention.  


What will this involve? What will you be expected to do?  

If you agree to participate, you will:  

• Identify 3-6 interdisciplinary team members to be a part of a Community of Practice (CoP) at your school. The CoP should be an interdisciplinary team including any of the following: teacher, paraprofessional, occupational therapist, administrator/counselor, nurse, speech language pathologists, social workers or school psychologists. It is strongly recommended that the team include a classroom teacher and be interdisciplinary in nature as training emphasizes application in the classroom and interdisciplinary collaboration.  

• The CoP will participate in five 1.5 virtual training sessions (see schedule overview below). *Attendance is critical* 

• Each CoP will engage in an Assessment and Next Steps process to identify gaps or opportunities to improve mental health promotion by supporting positive identity development. 


MP-MHTTC will:  

• Provide the training described above and any technical assistance during development of the strategic plan and implementation.  

• Provide continuing education credits to the CoP members (15 contact hours). If your state requires transcripted credit, the MHTTC will have the training approved, but the transcripted fee is the responsibility of the participant.  

• Provide required readings and resources to the CoP.  

• Follow up on the implementation plan.  


Benefits to you:  

• Enhanced capacity of all school personnel through enhanced understanding of how to apply knowledge about children’s mental health in the school.  

• Free resources for each CoP.  

• Free educational sessions and online discussions regarding mental health promotion.  

• Feeling connected to other schools implementing the projects.  

Continuing education credits (15 contact hours for CoP team members).  



January 17, 2024

  • Introduction to Communities of Practice Process and Assessment and Next Steps Document 

  • Review of best practices in school mental health 

February 21, 2024

  • Self-Awareness: Understanding our own Bias and its’ Impact 

March 20, 2024

  • Living Legacy. Trauma and its Impact in the Classroom 

April 10, 2024

  • Identity Maters 

May 8, 2024

  • Strength-Based Models & Strategies 

  • Final Reflections and Next Steps


LaVonne Fox Peltier


LaVonne is the Vice President of Academic Affairs at the Turtle Mountain Tribal Community College in Belcourt, ND.   She was born and raised on the Turtle Mountain Chippewa reservation. She has considerable experience working with children, youth, and young adults with mental health issues in mental health facilities. Her focus and passion areas are developing Indigenous culturally based interventions to address mental health issues. She also stresses the need to focus on strength-based approaches versus commonly used deficit-based practices. 


Sarah Nielsen


Sarah is a professor and chair at the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks, ND, in the Department of Occupational Therapy, School of Medicine and Health Sciences.  Sarah has over 20 years of experience working with children, youth and young adults with mental health issues in communities and schools. Her clinical practice included developing and implementing trauma-informed approaches in mental health care. She assisted students transitioning from mental health programs back to public schools where she trained and assisted schools in this effort.

Starts: Jan 17, 2024 3:00 pm
Ends: May 8, 2024 4:30 pm
Registration Deadline
January 2, 2024
Event Type
Webinar/Virtual Training
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