ERIC Number: ED415961
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1997
Reference Count: N/A
Schools and the Enhancement of Children's Wellness: Some Opportunities and Some Limiting Factors.
Cowen, Emory L.
This article offers the opinion that school mental health services should be built around the question: "What useful roles can schools play as part of a concerted social effort targeted to the enhancement of children's wellness?" The article suggests that there are many important roles: practical, repair-oriented roles, and new roles including engineering health-proofing school and class environments, building proactive health-facilitating curricula, and developing fluid systems of outreach to families and community settings in the service of enhancing children's early wellness. The chapter then describes the Primary Mental Health Project (PMHP), a program for early detection and prevention of children's school adjustment problems, including its accomplishments and limitations. Four prevention focal points of the program are noted: (1) focus on primary graders before problems take root and fan out; (2) systematic use of screening and early detection procedures; (3) use of carefully selected child associates as the program's prime, direct help-agents; and (4) modification of professional roles to feature systematic early screening to identify children at risk. The chapter makes two recommendations for the future: (1) greater proportions of the total school mental health effort must be invested in proactive activities; and (2) modifications must be made in the preparation and training of school and other mental health professionals. Contains over 80 references. (SD)
Descriptors: At Risk Persons, Child Behavior, Child Health, Childhood Needs, Children, Delivery Systems, Early Intervention, Elementary Education, Health Promotion, Health Services, Mental Health, Mental Health Programs, School Health Services, School Role, Special Needs Students, Student Adjustment, Well Being, Wellness
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A