Screening & Assessment
Mental health screening and assessment begins with needs assessment and resource mapping to evaluate the unique breadth, depth, and prevalence of student mental health needs in your community to be able to make informed decisions about mental health services and supports.
Resource mapping is a method used to identify and link community and school-based resources with an agreed upon vision, organizational goals, strategies, or expected outcomes. It may also be referred to as asset mapping or environmental scanning. By identifying what services are already being provided, resource mapping can improve access to these services, avoid duplication of services, and enhance communication and collaboration across agencies.
Mental health screening is the assessment of students to determine whether they may be at risk for a mental health concern. Screening can be conducted using a systematic tool or process with an entire population, such as a school’s student body, or a group of students, such as a classroom or grade level(s).
Mental health assessment is using assessment measures with students who are already identified as being at-risk for or having mental health problems. Included as part of data-driven decision making, it is the process of using observations and other relevant data/information to make decisions that are fair and objective. Mental health assessment can help inform decisions related to appropriate student supports and be used to monitor progress and outcomes across multiple tiers (mental health promotion to selective and indicated intervention).
Data gathered as part of a needs assessment and resource mapping process, and mental health screening and assessment can be used in multiple ways to make decisions about needed services and supports, to monitor student and program progress and outcomes across multiple tiers, and to evaluate the overall impact of your comprehensive school mental health system.
Screening and Assessment Resources
Use SHAPE to assess your school or district performance on Teaming. Below is a sampling of available resources of the SHAPE system to help your team advance progress.
Screening and Assessment:
The SHAPE System Screening and Assessment Library includes instruments appropriate for use in school mental health. Search for the screening or assessment tool that fits your school by focus area (academic, school climate, or social/emotional/behavioral), assessment purpose, student age, language, reporter, and cost. The NCSMH team has carefully reviewed every measure to provide a brief summary of each with direct links to copies of the instrument and scoring information.
Module #4: Evidence-Based Practices, Implementation Science, Data-Informed Decision Making, and Program Evaluation
This module covers a variety of topics related to the science behind effective community-partnered school behavioral health programs.
In Chapter 3, Dr. Connors presents Data-Informed Decision Making. She describes the Data-Informed Decision Making (DIDM) process, how DIDM can help inform selection, implementation and assessment of strategies to support students in the classroom, and walks through the process using individual student and classroom level examples.
Module #2: Funding, Resource Mapping, and Teaming
In Chapter 2, Dr. Lever presents Resource Mapping. She describes the steps to resource mapping and how to prepare for and sustain mapping efforts, and outlines the importance of resource mapping for schools.
Resource Mapping in Schools and School Districts: This Resource Guide describes the essential steps to resource mapping for schools and includes activities, worksheets and handouts to help facilitate the process in your school or district.
The SHAPE System includes a Resource Center of additional guides, tip sheets, and online learning opportunities to help schools, districts and states advance their school mental health quality and sustainability.