The Center for School Behavioral Health

at MHA of Greater Houston

 

Mission

The Center for School Behavioral Health (The Center) at MHA of Greater Houston will serve as a “living laboratory” for incubating innovative, cost-effective and replicable best practices to improve the behavioral health of students by facilitating collective action; providing highly specialized professional development opportunities, technical assistance and community education; and conducting research, advocacy, and policy analysis.

Vision

The Center transforms school behavioral health to support the healthy psychological and cognitive development of children in the Greater Houston region through services and programs promoting behavioral health, as well as the prevention, early identification, and treatment of behavioral health disorders.

Components

The Center will operate within MHA of Greater Houston and will encompass six major programmatic areas.

  • The Harris County School Behavioral Health Initiative
  • The School Behavioral Health Learning Community
  • The School Behavioral Health Best Practice Incubator
  • The Stigma Reduction Initiative
  • The Texas School Behavioral Health Annual Conference
  • School Behavioral Health Advocacy and Policy Analysis 

The National Institute of Mental Health reports the onset of half of all mental illnesses occurs by age 14 and a total of 75% of these illnesses begin by age 24.  According to Texans Care for Children, nine out of 10 students classified as having an emotional disturbance in Texas public schools were suspended or expelled from school. 

In order to address children’s mental health needs in the Greater Houston region in a systemic manner and help develop trauma-informed organizations, MHA of Greater Houston through The Center for School Behavioral Health at MHA of Greater Houston will continue the results-driven work performed for the last three years through the Harris County School Behavioral Health Initiative (SBHI).

The Center will transform the landscape of school behavioral health in the Greater Houston region, and break down stakeholder's barriers to spearhead concrete measures, projects, and policies that promote the well-being of school-age children and enhance their academic performance.

The Center will work collaboratively with school districts, public and nonprofit child-serving organizations, institutions of higher learning, community stakeholders including advocacy groups, students and parents to develop and implement projects and policies that promote the well-being of school-age children, prevent the downward trajectory of untreated behavioral health concerns, and appropriately address the needs of children with behavioral disorders, as well as the needs of children that have experienced trauma. The Center will foster life-long learners, promote participatory research to incubate innovative models to address the behavioral health needs of school-age children in an integrated manner, and advocate for the implementation of sensible public and school policies to close gaps in services and eliminate constraints that perpetuate the behavioral health needs of students.

 

For more information, contact The Center for School Behavioral Health at MHA of Greater Houston, contact Janet Pozmantier, Director at jpozmantier@mhahouston.org. 

For Media Inquiries, contact Traci Patterson at tpatterson@mhahouston.org or 713-520-3476.