Date of Award
Doctor of Education in Teacher Leadership (Ed.D)
Dr. Tak C. Chan, Co-Chair and Dr. Joya Carter-Hicks
First Committee Member
Dr. Benyao Zheng
School-based mental health centers provide promising solutions to the nationwide problem of high school dropouts and help students tackle the many barriers that may not only impede their health and well-being, but also their chances for completing high school (Center for School, Health, and Education, 2014). Therefore, gaining and understanding the perspectives of educators will influence the course initiative. The study showed that the services were needed because every participant (n=130) had experienced students who exhibited behaviors associated with mental health problems in the classroom or school environment. Duties regarding the provision of counseling services and behavior-related issues were perceived to be the responsibility of the counselor while screening, and assessment-related duties were thought to be the responsibility of the school psychologist. Case management and the provision of intervention services were thought to be the responsibility of the school social worker. Monitoring and providing early intervention services were thought to be the duty of the regular and special education teachers. The primary obstacles to providing mental health services at school are a lack of funding and resources. Other obstacles include stigma, inability to access services, and teachers being untrained on mental health signs and how and to whom to refer the students. The main benefit of providing mental health services would be an overall improvement in academic achievement. These findings are beneficial for districts that are looking at assessing the need of school-based mental health services and program implementation.