MHTTC Network Coordinating Office Staff Directory

Behavioral Threat Assessment in Schools: Considerations and Outcome Measurement

Celebrating 1 Year of Classroom WISE

Helping Educators Implement Strategies to Support Student Mental Health

Developing and Implementing Classroom WISE: A Mental Health Literacy Training Package for Educators and School Personnel

What Helps and Hinders Schools from Implementing Mental Health Literacy Training?

The Effect of Low Versus Moderately Intensive Implementation Strategies on Uptake of Mental Health Literacy Training in Schools

Behavioral Threat Assessment in Schools: Evidence, Fit, and Appropriateness

Speaker Lineup for Early Psychosis 101: Basics for Supporting Students, a 3-Part Introductory Series

speaker lineup

Session 1 Speakers

October 18: Recognizing and Responding to Signs of Risk for Psychosis in Students

Michelle

Michelle Friedman-Yakoobian, Ph.D., is a licensed clinical psychologist in Boston, MA. She is the co-director of the Early Psychosis Working Group of the MHTTC Network and trainer for the New England MHTTC. Dr. Friedman-Yakoobian’s career has been devoted to the development and implementation of effective psychosocial interventions for individuals experiencing psychosis (or signs of risk) and their families. She co-founded the CEDAR Clinic, the first clinic for youth at clinical high risk for psychosis in MA and is also the Associate Director of a Clinical High Risk for Psychosis (CHR-P) Community Programs grant focused on expanding early intervention for psychosis across MA. She is a principal investigator in the Response to Risk Program at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center with a research program focused on developing school & cognitive interventions for youth at CHR-P. Dr. Friedman-Yakoobian is also an Assistant Professor in Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. She earned her undergraduate degree in human development and family studies at Cornell University and her doctorate in clinical psychology at the University of Massachusetts Boston.

Vera

Vera A. Muñiz-Saurré (they/éle) is a nonbinary, queer, Peruvian public health professional currently working as a Program Coordinator and Peer Advocate for the Massachusetts Psychosis Prevention Partnership (M3P) and Building Bridges towards Equity in Psychosis Intervention and Careers (2B-EPIC) grants at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and a Peer Counselor at the Lab for Early Psychosis at McLean Hospital. Vera is diagnosed with Schizoaffective disorder, a survivor of conversion therapy targeting their sexuality, and identifies as Mad and a psychiatric survivor. Starting in 2017, Vera helped found and admin the Psychosis Spectrum Server on Discord and still helps maintain that community! Vera graduated with their Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and their Master of Public Health in Community Health Sciences from Boston University. 


Session 2 Speakers

November 1: Hope, Healing and Homework: Empowering Educators in Screening for Psychosis and Navigating School Supports for Students with Psychosis

Apurva

Apurva Bhatt, M.D., is a Clinical Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University School of Medicine. She completed her undergraduate and medical school education at the University of Missouri-Kansas City's 6-year combined BA/MD program. She went on to complete her residency training at the University of Missouri-Kansas City/Center for Behavioral Medicine’s Adult Psychiatry residency program and graduated Child and Adolescent Psychiatry fellowship at the University of California Davis. She is co-chair of the Early Psychosis Work group at the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.

Jason

Dr. Schiffman earned a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of Southern California. He is Professor and Director of Clinical Training within the Department of Psychological Science, University of California, Irvine. Dr. Schiffman previously founded and developed two clinical, research, and training programs serving people at clinical high risk for psychosis. He has published nearly 200 scientific articles and procured $14M in grants. Dr. Schiffman is one of only three certified trainers of the SIPS in the US. His psychosis research refines the identification process of people at risk, elucidates the effects of psychosocial interventions, and uncovers mechanisms reducing stigma.


Session 3 Speakers

November 15: Transition to College for Youth with Psychosis

Apurva

Apurva Bhatt, M.D., is a Clinical Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University School of Medicine. She completed her undergraduate and medical school education at the University of Missouri-Kansas City's 6-year combined BA/MD program. She went on to complete her residency training at the University of Missouri-Kansas City/Center for Behavioral Medicine’s Adult Psychiatry residency program and graduated Child and Adolescent Psychiatry fellowship at the University of California Davis. She is co-chair of the Early Psychosis Work group at the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.

Bethany

Bethany Boik is a graduate from the University of Michigan- Dearborn; where she received her bachelor's degree in Behavioral Sciences. While attending college, Bethany served two service year terms in Americorps. Eventually leading her to pursue work in child abuse prevention. Later working in the community mental health field with at-risk youth and young adults in Detroit, Michigan. In 2018, Bethany received an award through the Detroit Wayne Mental Health Authority, a Youth United Change Maker award, for supporting youth voices. In 2022, she won a mini grant to assist in publishing her first book, entitled Diary of a Schizophrenic. The book is a memoir about growing up with multiple mental illnesses, including schizoaffective disorder: a form of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.

Zhanna

Zhanna Elberg is an assistant professor of clinical psychiatry at the University at Buffalo Jacob's School of Medicine where she also serves as the associate training director of the general psychiatry residency program. She is the program director of OnTrack NY @ECMC, a coordinated specialty care program for young adults recovering from first episode psychosis. 

Olivia

Olivia Hamrah, MD, (she/her), is a child and adolescent psychiatrist at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital. She works with adolescents and emerging adults in the outpatient transition age clinic and in school-based mental health. Her clinical and research focus is in early and first episode psychosis including the prevention of psychosis, treatment of clinical high-risk for psychosis, CBT and MCT for psychosis, and pharmacotherapy. Dr. Hamrah completed her fellowship training at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital and her adult psychiatry training at UPMC Western Psychiatric Hospital in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Prior to her medical training, Dr. Hamrah taught middle school physics and math at a public charter school in Washington, DC. 

Early Psychosis 101: Basics for Supporting Students, a 3-Part Introductory Series


About the Series:

Identifying young people at risk for or facing a first episode of psychosis is a major state and national priority due to the recognized benefits of early intervention. Because symptoms generally begin between the ages of 12-25, schools are critical places for identifying those with early symptoms of both psychosis-risk and early psychosis symptoms.

In this virtual 3-part learning series, each session focused on key aspects of early psychosis support for those working in school mental health in a variety of roles and settings. We focused on how to recognize students with early psychosis symptoms, link them to appropriate services, and create appropriate accommodations to support student academic success and mental wellbeing. In addition, methods for addressing the stigma one faces when dealing with these symptoms with peers and school personnel were also considered.

Each 1-hour learning session focused on a specific topic, then addressed attendee-submitted questions. Case examples were also utilized to illustrate key points in recognizing those with early psychosis symptoms, potential interventions, and accommodations. Tools that can be helpful for screening for psychosis symptoms were also shared.


Learning Objectives: 

As a result of their participation in this webinar series, attendees wee able to:

  1. Articulate how recognition of and early intervention for psychosis symptoms supports overall student education.
  2. Explain the continuum of care for early psychosis risk and recognition, treatment models, and how to best access community early psychosis treatment supports.  
  3. Identify  mental health screening tools, with an emphasis on early psychosis screening tools, and explain strategies for using them in school settings for early psychosis symptom identification in students.
  4. Articulate helpful accommodations from the perspectives of Section 504 and IDEA to support those with early psychosis risk or psychosis to derive the full educational benefits of their school experience.  
  5. Explain how stigma can impact early psychosis care and strategies for reducing stigma about psychosis to benefit the school community

Intended Audience:

This introductory-level learning series is geared toward the following school personnel from middle and high schools:


Session Information:

Session 1 | October 18: Recognizing and Responding to Signs of Risk for Psychosis in Students 

This 60-minute session provided a brief overview of what early psychosis is, including signs and symptoms, how symptoms occur on a continuum, treatment options, the promise of early intervention and common barriers to care, and how school providers can recognize and respond to early signs.

Session 2 | November 1: Hope, Healing and Homework: Empowering Educators in Screening for Psychosis and Navigating School Supports for Students with Psychosis

Returning to school after experiencing psychosis can be challenging and stressful for individuals and families. This 60-minute session covered how educators can screen for psychosis and support families and elementary/middle/high school students in navigating school supports for students with psychosis. We also discussed the purpose of and strategies for approaching disclosure and review school accommodations that may be helpful for supporting the academic success of students with early psychosis and those at risk for psychosis.

Session 3 | November 15:Transition to College for Youth with Psychosis

This 60-minute session is a case-based discussion covering the process of assessing readiness for college, accessing accommodations, and preparing youth with a history of psychosis to transition to college. Many young people are interested in higher education but are unsure of what that may look like after receiving a diagnosis of a primary psychotic disorder. We hope to equip attendees with basic knowledge of psychosis spectrum disorders, considerations for a transition to college, and resources for supporting these young adults in achieving success!


Speaker Lineup:

Sessions were presented by clinicians who work in the early psychosis field and individuals with lived experience related to early psychosis who can speak to the challenges of facing early psychosis symptoms in secondary school settings, as well as strategies to best support those with early symptoms and their families.


Resources of Interest:

We've compiled Early Psychosis-related resources shared with us by our session speakers. These resources can be accessed in the document below. 


Additional Information:

This learning series is presented to you through a partnership between the MHTTC Network and the Psychosis-Risk and Early Psychosis Program Network (PEPPNET)

Certificates of attendance were made available to those who attended 50% (30 minutes) or more of each live session. CEUs are not available for these sessions. 


Spread the word! We invite you to share the series flyer available here. Questions? Please contact Jessica Gonzalez at [email protected].

Addressing Key Workforce Challenges in Rural Mental Health Care through Regionally-Tailored Training and Technical Assistance

Family Engagement in School Mental Health

Federal Health Privacy Laws: Basics for School Professionals Session 2

Federal Health Privacy Laws: Basics for School Professionals Session 1

Proud & Empowered: A School-Based Intervention for LGBTQ+ Youth Coping

Get to know our speakers!

speaker banner

steve headshot

Steven Adelsheim, MD is a child/adolescent and adult psychiatrist who works to support community behavioral health partnerships locally, regionally, at the state level and nationally. He is the Director of the Stanford Center for Youth Mental Health and Wellbeing in the Department of Psychiatry. Dr. Adelsheim has partnered in developing statewide mental health policy and systems, including those focused on school mental health, telebehavioral health, tribal behavioral health programs, and suicide prevention. For many years Dr. Adelsheim has been developing and implementing early detection/intervention programs for young people in school-based and primary care settings, including programs for depression, anxiety, prodromal symptoms of psychosis, and first episodes of psychosis. Dr. Adelsheim is also involved in the implementation of integrated behavioral health care models in primary care settings as well as the use of media to decrease stigma surrounding mental health issues. 

amber headshot

Amber Black is a Health Privacy Associate for the COE-PHI, and a Staff Attorney for Health Privacy at the Legal Action Center, where she provides legal counsel, training, and technical assistance to providers, government agencies, and individuals regarding federal and state health privacy laws, including HIPAA and 42 CFR Part 2.  Prior to joining the Legal Action Center, Amber worked in the LegalHealth unit of the New York Legal Assistance Group.  She received both her undergraduate and law degrees from Duke University.

abigail headshot

Abigail English is the director of the Center for Adolescent Health & the Law, which she co-founded in 1999. She is a lawyer, researcher, and advocate for the rights of vulnerable young people. She has participated in major litigation affecting the legal rights of children and adolescents, lectured widely to youth serving professionals, and taught courses in public policy, law, and public health. Her research and advocacy have focused on health insurance and public financing of care for adolescents and young adults, consent and confidentiality protections, and sexual and reproductive health care. From 1976-1998, she was an attorney at the National Center for Youth Law (NCYL) in San Francisco, California, where she established NCYL’s Adolescent Health Care Project. She has held adjunct faculty appointments at the UC Berkeley School of Public Policy, the Boalt Hall School of Law, and the Gillings Global School of Public Health at UNC Chapel Hill. She received her undergraduate degree from Harvard University and her law degree from UC Berkeley’s Boalt Hall School of Law. 

jackie headshot

Jacqueline Seitz is the Health Privacy Lead for the COE-PHI, and Senior Staff Attorney for Health Privacy at the Legal Action Center, where she provides legal counsel and technical assistance on various health privacy laws, including HIPAA and 42 CFR Part 2. She also conducts trainings on federal and state health privacy laws to providers, government agencies, and individuals. Prior to joining Legal Action Center, Jacqueline was an Excelsior Fellow at the NYS Justice Center for the Protection of People with Special Needs.

Federal Health Privacy Laws: Basics for School Professionals - Session 2

Federal Health Privacy Laws: Basics for School Professionals - Session 1

Federal Health Privacy Laws: Basics for School Professionals


About the Virtual Learning Series:

There are multiple federal health privacy laws that may apply to student mental health information. To assist mental health professionals working in schools in understanding how the federal health privacy laws apply to student mental health information, the MHTTC Network and the Center of Excellence for Protected Health Information (CoE-PHI) hosted a two-part virtual learning series that aimed to:

Session 1 focused on the importance of protecting and sharing student mental health information. Subject matter experts also provided an overview of the federal health privacy laws that apply to student mental health information.

Session 2 built upon the learnings from Session 1 by reviewing common scenarios in school settings that involve student mental health information. Subject matter experts led a discussion about clinical and legal considerations for each scenario.

Additional notes: Each session was 60 minutes and included interactive activities and time for Q&A.Certificates of completion are available to viewers of 50% (30 minutes) or more of the live sessions. CEUs are not available for these sessions. Please note that sessions were recorded and are available for free access below. Questions? Reach out to Jessica Gonzalez at [email protected].


Intended Audience:

While all school administrators and personnel are welcome to view the recordings, this program was specifically aimed toward school-based health and mental health professionals, including:


Session Information and Recordings:

Access the slide deck, recording and transcript for each session by clicking the buttons below. In addition, we have a Learning Series Highlights handout available for you to access, which includes key points addressed in the learning series, and some frequently asked questions and answers. Also available is a Learning Series 2-pager that summarizes the evaluation of the training and considerations for future training and resources on this topic.

Session 1: Tuesday, March 14, 2023 @ 1-2pm ET

Session 2: Thursday, March 16, 2023 @ 1-2pm ET


Learn About Our Speakers:

The series is brought to you via a collaboration with the MHTTC Network and the Center of Excellence for Protected Health Information. Each session featured clinical and legal experts from Stanford University, Legal Action Center andCenter for Adolescent Health & the Law. Access speaker bios here!

speaker lineup

Implementation Science: Overview and Opportunity for SAMHSA

Classroom WISE Implementation Guide

War on Ukraine: Resources to Support Children & Adolescents


Children and adolescents may need support managing anxiety, fear and feelings of uncertainty as the crisis in Ukraine escalates. Here we've compiled a list of resources to assist caregivers, educators and school mental health professionals in supporting children and adolescents during this unprecedented time.


MHTTC Resources

How to Talk to Students about Trauma and Violence

Implementing Social Emotional Learning (SEL) During a Crisis

Putting It Together: Disaster Behavioral Health - Health Support Team to Poland for Ukraine Refugee Crisis | Podcast

Putting It Together: Safe, Sane, and Stable in Turbulent Times


Resources from the National Child Traumatic Stress Network

Talking to Children about War

Age-Related Reactions to a Traumatic Event

After a Crisis: Helping Young Children Heal

Psychological First Aid:

Traumatic Separation and Refugee and Immigrant Children: Tips for Current Caregivers

Understanding Refugee Trauma:

Coping in Hard Times:

Helping Children with Traumatic Grief:

Understanding Child Trauma and Resilience: For Military Parents and Caregivers


Resources from the Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress

Strengthening Military Families to Support Children’s Well-Being 

Helping Children Cope During Deployment

War in Ukraine Mental Health Resources


Additional Resources

A Conversation to Remember: How to Talk to Kids About Tough Topics

How to Talk With Students About the Russia-Ukraine War: 5 Tips

Resources For Educators and Families To Discuss The Events In Ukraine With Students

How to Talk to Kids About the Ukraine Invasion

Health Support Team: Disaster Behavioral Health Training and Response

SAMHSA Disaster Distress Helpline

 

War on Ukraine: Resources to Support Children & Adolescents

Children and adolescents may need support managing anxiety, fear and feelings of uncertainty as the crisis in Ukraine escalates. Here we've compiled a list of resources to assist caregivers, educators and school mental health professionals in supporting children and adolescents during this unprecedented time.


Resources from the Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress

Strengthening Military Families to Support Children’s Well-Being 

Helping Children Cope During Deployment


Resources from the National Child Traumatic Stress Network

Talking to Children about War

Age-Related Reactions to a Traumatic Event

Psychological First Aid for Displaced Children and Families

Traumatic Separation and Refugee and Immigrant Children: Tips for Current Caregivers

Understanding Refugee Trauma:

Coping in Hard Times:

Helping Children with Traumatic Grief:


Additional Resources

How to Talk With Students About the Russia-Ukraine War: 5 Tips

Resources For Educators and Families To Discuss The Events In Ukraine With Students

How to Talk to Kids About the Ukraine Invasion

SAMHSA Disaster Distress Helpline

MHTTC & Project AWARE Partnership

About the MHTTC & Project AWARE Partnership:

Project AWARE (Advancing Wellness and Resilience in Education) is a SAMHSA-funded initiative focused on the mental health of youth in schools, aged 12-17. Project AWARE funds state, tribal, territorial, and local education agencies to increase awareness of youth mental health; provide mental health training to school personnel and other adults who interact with youth; and connect youth and their families to mental health services.

In 2021, SAMHSA requested that the MHTTC Network provide technical assistance (TA) during our Year 4 (August 15, 2021 - August 14, 2022) to the Project AWARE grantees from the 2018-2021 cohorts. As a first step, the MHTTC Network conducted a needs assessment with Project AWARE grantees to understand project goals and challenges, outline mental health-related evidence-based practices being implemented, and identify training and technical assistance needs. Needs assessments were conducted via questionnaire, virtual meetings, and/or interviews. You may access the Needs Assessment findings here.

The MHTTC Network has continued to support the Project AWARE grantees in our Project Year 5 (August 15, 2022 - September 29, 2023) and will continue to do so in our Project Year 6 (September 30, 2023 - September 29, 2024). A map of the 98 Project AWARE grantees that the MHTTC Network is supporting is available here. Services provided by the MHTTC Network to Project AWARE grantees are outlined below:


Bi-Monthly Project AWARE TA Tidbits

Project AWARE TA Tidbits are technical assistance updates provided by the Regional Centers on a bi-monthly basis, aimed at providing a birds-eye view of the impactful technical assistance, training, collaboration and relationship-building activities each one of our Centers lead with Project AWARE grantees in their regions.

December 2022 TA Tidbits

February 2023 TA Tidbits

April 2023 TA Tidbits

June 2023 TA Tidbits

August 2023 TA Tidbits

October 2023 TA Tidbits

January 2024 TA Tidbits


MHTTC-AWARE Groupsite

The MHTTC-AWARE Groupsite was created to enable members of the MHTTC Network & Project AWARE TA Partnership to communicate, collaborate and connect. We encourage communication via discussion forums, resource sharing, and group announcements. Through this shared space, MHTTC TA Liaisons and Providers also aim to provide support for frequently asked questions and facilitate access to training, technical assistance, and resources developed by the MHTTC Network. Stay connected and create a free account here.


Additional Information for Project AWARE Grantees:

To find out more about navigating MHTTC Technical Assistance for your grant and contacting your MHTTC TA Liaison/Provider, you may access the Navigating MHTTC TA resource.

In addition to the direct TA provided by the MHTTC Regional Centers, Project AWARE Grantees are welcome to attend other school mental health focused MHTTC events (see event description for limits on attendees) and access all resources. The monthly Project AWARE Grantees School Mental Health Bulletin provides a snapshot of the school mental health events being hosted across the MHTTC Network for upcoming months, as well as recently released MHTTC products and resources. Project AWARE-specific technical assistance activities and external resources are also highlighted.

Questions? Please contact Jessica Gonzalez, MHTTC School Mental Health Coordinator at [email protected].