Bridging Mental Health and Education in Urban Elementary Schools: Participatory Research to Inform Intervention Development

By Cappella, Elise; Jackson, Daisy R. et al. | School Psychology Review, December 2011 | Go to article overview

Bridging Mental Health and Education in Urban Elementary Schools: Participatory Research to Inform Intervention Development


Cappella, Elise, Jackson, Daisy R., Bilal, Caroline, Hamre, Bridget K., Soule, Charles, School Psychology Review


Increasing numbers of elementary schools have mental health professionals on site to prevent and alleviate the behavioral difficulties that interfere with learning (Brener, Weist, Adelman, Taylor, & Vernon-Smiley, 2007, Kutash, Duchnowski, & Lynn, 2006). Behavioral problems, such as inattention, impulsivity, and defiance, are common in urban high-poverty schools. Teachers express concerns about disruptive behavior (Reinke, Stormont, Herman, Puri, & Goel, 2011), and children with behavioral problems are at risk for maladjustment (Tolan & Henry, 1996). School mental health services offer the promise of support--yet this promise is inconsistently realized. Studies reveal minimal effects on children's behavioral and academic functioning (Hoagwood et al., 2007), and mental health remains isolated from the mission and structure of schools (Weist & Paternite, 2006). Recent calls have been made to align school mental health with educational goals as a means toward increasing its relevance and effect (Atkins, Hoagwood, Kutash, & Seidman, 2010; Cappella, Frazier, Atkins, Schoenwald, & Glisson, 2008).

School mental health professionals are trained in assessment, individual and group therapy, crisis and case management, and family outreach (Brener et al., 2007), all of which facilitates their direct work with children and families (Kaufman, Hughes, & Riccio, 2010). It is less common for these professionals to have the language and tools to support classroom teachers (Schaeffer et al., 2005). Yet teachers arguably have the most effect on children's adaptation in school (Heck, 2007; Nye, Konstantopoulos, & Hedges, 2004). Effective teacher-student interactions are critical to academic and social-emotional development, particularly among children experiencing multiple problems (Hamre & Pianta, 2005; Mashburn et al., 2008). Effective interactions communicate warmth and respect, positive and clear expectations, and engaging and rich opportunities for learning (Hamre & Pianta, 2010). More adequately preparing mental health professionals to help teachers interact effectively with students with behavioral difficulties--and all students--may increase the effect these professionals can have on children's development.

Toward this goal, and guided by community-based participatory methods (Gittelsohn et al., 2006; Lantz, Israel, Schulz, & Reyes, 2006), a teacher consultation and coaching program was developed for school mental health professionals to deliver as a part of their ongoing activities in urban low-income schools. The program--Bridging Education and Mental Health in Urban Schools (BRIDGE)--fits within the broader framework of education and mental health interventions (e.g., Nastasi, 2004), and draws specifically from two existing models: MyTeachingPartner (MTP; Pianta, Mashburn, Downer, Hamre, & Justice, 2008) and Links to Learning (L2L; Atkins et al., 2006; Cappella et al., 2008). Goals are to increase effective teacher-student interactions across the classroom and with children with behavioral difficulties as a means toward children's academic, social, and behavioral adjustment in underfunded schools (Cappella, Hamre, Jackson, Wagner, & Soule, 2011).

One element of the intervention development process is contextualizing the program for its settings in order to increase its relevance and feasibility. Although it is not new to engage in participatory processes to "naturalize" interventions (e.g., Gittelsohn et al., 2006; National Research Council and Institute of Medicine, 2002), it is uncommon for these processes to be the focus of published scholarship in school psychology or prevention science. Toward this end, this article documents findings from a collaborative study to inform the adaptation of BRIDGE (Phase I) and a pilot experimental trial to assess the implementation of the adapted BRIDGE program by indigenous staff in urban schools (Phase II). Aims are to increase the specificity with which we describe approaches to intervention development (Cates, 1995; Wandersman, 2003) and enhance the likelihood of building sustainable programs to support children in schools.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Bridging Mental Health and Education in Urban Elementary Schools: Participatory Research to Inform Intervention Development
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.