By Christopher Chun-Seeley, M.S.W.
The toll of this pandemic cannot be understated when thinking about the entire school community. From budgets to staff and to the children that schools serve, each has faced unprecedented challenges over the last year. The American Psychiatric Association Foundation (APAF) wants to do its part to ensure that the whole school community can get the support they need going into this next school year. On June 21st, 2021, we launched our Notice. Talk. Act. at School Grant program, which will lead to the full supportive partnership between ten schools and the APAF.
What will schools get with this grant?
The APAF is offering to cover the full cost of the direct delivery of the Notice. Talk. Act. at School Mental Health Professional Development Program. The program components include an E-Learning Module with videos, audio playbacks, and interactive check-ins, a Classroom module designed to be tailored to your school delivered by an APAF Certified Instructor, and 12-months of learning with new courses based on your school’s assessments.
How can your school apply?
Your school must be an elementary, middle, high, or alternative school in the United States with a mental health/support services referral system established (this can be as simple as referring students to the school counselor). The school that is applying must have 40% or more of its students eligible for free or reduced-price meals, providing evidence that demonstrates this statistic. We will also ask that you provide a letter of support from your administration in delivering the curriculum to the staff if your school is awarded the grant funds. To apply for this grant opportunity, please visit ntagrant.apafdn.org.
What happens if your school doesn’t get the grant?
We do not want to discourage anyone from bringing in the Notice. Talk. Act. at School delivery to their school community. If you do not get awarded the grant this year, we want to encourage you to apply next year when the grant cycle opens back up. You can also apply for the delivery of the program if you cannot wait to receive the grant or are not eligible for this opportunity. We have two different price points that allow schools to make the best decision for their staff. We also have some free resources available online that can help support the whole school community, including parents and caregivers, that you can find by visiting apafdn.org/schools.
The American Consortium for Equity in Education, publisher of the "Equity & Access" journal, celebrates and connects the educators, associations, community partners and industry leaders who are working to solve problems and create a more equitable environment for historically underserved pre K-12 students throughout the United States.