Mental Health Policy & Procedures Policy Number and Last Update
(03.04.02/01-2011)

Policy

Program staff is conscious of the strain to migrant and seasonal children's emotional development caused by abrupt separation from their parents and repeated adaptation to day-care environments.

The program also recognizes that the family members' all-around emotional adjustment contributes more to their happiness and success in life than any other factor.

Therefore, it is Migrant Head Start's intent to aid and sustain the emotional well-being of every family.

Procedures

  1. Obtain parent consent before completing the questionnaire (FSCs do as part of enrollment).
  2. Teaching staff completes one of four grantee-approved (attached), social-emotional checklist within the first 30 days, and before every mental health observation.
  3. Mental Health Coordinator gives the Consultant or Associate a list of referrals for observation (from bi-weekly).
  4. Consultant or Associate reviews social emotional checklists.
  5. Consultant or Associate observes all classrooms.
  6. The Consultant or Associate completes the recommendations form (this form is confidential and must be filed accordingly) and meets with staff of each classroom to answer questions and make recommendations.*
  7. Mental Health Coordinator completes the Activity Report form before Consultant or Associate leaves the center.
  8. Recommendations for children referred for observation are discussed at the next bi-weekly staffing, along with any children brought forth by the Consultant or Associate as a result of their observations, and the course of action must be decided.
  9. The Consultant or Associate is available for consultation, a minimum of twice a month for at least an hour, with staff or parents. The Consultant or Associate will be available during evening hours, if necessary. (The Head Start Director is responsible for advertising the availability of these services). Consultant or Associate informs parents of services, including substance abuse counseling or any other mental health services available, and refers them if they request it.

*The Consultant or Associate cannot refer children to himself/herself for further evaluation.