Report to: Program Administrator
FLSA Status: Exempt
Salary Range: Salary Schedule III (Professional/Technical/Cert)
The Mental Health Specialist will work collaboratively with Special Programs and Services administration and local school districts to design and/or implement cost-effective, integrated, age-specific mental health programs, founded on evidence-based practices, in response to identified needs and/or specific grant requirements as applicable. The Mental Health Specialist supports system-wide program development and implementation for at-risk students and may provide direct, consultative, or coordinated service supports to children, families, and partner agencies to promote personal and social-emotional development for participating children/youth, and advance positive and productive learning environments.
- Designs and develops age-specific intervention programs for at-risk children and youth under the direction of program administration.
- Coordinates with school staff, health, social, and mental health agencies, and partner districts to develop a fiscally-feasible intervention model, design services, identify clients, and develop and integrate clinical and educational components of the program.
- Assists in development, revisions, and implementation of standards of practice, policies, protocols, procedures, and record-keeping systems.
- Develops capacity and understanding of the need to provide a day treatment program or similar model of intervention among local school districts and communities.
- Implements a program model under direction of building or grant administrator.
- Ensures compliance with all regulatory needs of participating partners.
- Supervises children/youth during a variety of activities to ensure a safe, orderly, respectful environment that develops student responsibility.
- Coordinates with the designated school district staff to develop appropriate transition plans, assisting students and families in the matriculation process.
- Assists in the team development of individual plans (learning, behavior, education, or treatment) for identified students.
- Attends appropriate school and agency meetings.
- Liaisons with community agencies to access coordinated services for identified student needs.
- Provides consultation and assists parents in accessing resources, in order to enhance the social/emotional development of participating children/youth, including access to professional mental health services.
- Collects and maintains student data relative to social-emotional skills utilizing standardized and formative assessments.
- Assists in oversight of fiscal accounting and evaluation of program effectiveness, under supervision of program administrator
- Files reports and other required documents in an accurate and timely manner.
- Assists teachers with integration of classroom activities to promote social skill development.
- Provides emergency counseling for students and families in crisis, as needed.
- Maintains confidentiality of student and agency records.
- Demonstrates professionalism in all work related venues.
- Reacts to change productively and performs other duties as set forth by the administrator deemed to be advantageous to the program.
Bachelor’s Degree in Mental Health, Counseling, Social/Human Services, Psychology, Behavioral Science, or equivalent field required (Master’s Degree preferred). Minimum of two years experience providing individual or group, mental health services with children and families. Management or administration and public education experience is highly desired for this position. An equivalent combination of education and experience which provides the skills, knowledge and abilities to perform the essential functions of the position may be substituted. WSP/FBI criminal history fingerprint background clearance required.
Required knowledge, skills, and abilities:
- Knowledge of community and/or education-based mental health treatment programs.
- Knowledge of effective techniques used in the assessment of students with social/emotional development and educational difficulties or at-risk behaviors.
- Knowledge of general and special education principles and practices.
- Knowledge of individual, group, crisis counseling/consultation practices and procedures.
- Knowledge of individual plans and evidence-based programs which address the education, behavior, social-emotional, and transition needs of high-risk and Special Education eligible students.
- Knowledge of effective strategies to manage and change student behavior consistent with program expectations and procedures.
- Skill in basic computer functions to complete assigned reports and record keeping.
- Knowledge of effective team processing, leadership and decision making techniques.
- Ability to utilize standardized and formative assessments to evaluate students’ social-emotional development and assist teachers and parent in providing appropriate support.
- Ability to promote positive public relations between the school, staff, students, parents, and community.
- Ability to design and implement Day Treatment program, goals, and objectives.
- Ability to work collaboratively and coordinate with service agencies, school district administrators/staff, and other support agencies that may have direct and/or indirect impact on individual student needs.
- Ability to design, monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of individualized and intervention and program efficacy.
- Ability to motivate others to achieve individual and program objectives.
- Ability to problem-solve, intervene responsibly, and constructively manage crisis and high stress situations.
- Ability to work independently using effective time management and organizational skills.
- Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with co-workers, school district staff, parents, and community partners.
- Ability to communicate effectively in both oral and written format.
Must possess Department of Health credentialing as Registered/Certified Counselor. Washington State licensure in social work, counseling equivalent, or State of Washington certification as Educational Staff Associate in School Social Work or Counseling/Psychology desired. Valid Washington State driver’s license, proof of liability insurance and personal vehicle required for transportation to various sites. First Aid/CPR card (or willingness to obtain) required.
Working Conditions and Physical Requirements:
Work is performed approximately 80% indoors within a controlled environment and 20% traveling within assigned geographic areas of NWESD region to complete essential functions and position requirements. Evenings and some weekends required. Lifts and carries a maximum of 30 pounds. Adequate manual and finger dexterity, hearing, speech, and vision are necessary to perform the essential functions of this position.
Hazards: Due to the nature of the population of the school, hazards include but are not limited to exposure to weapons, threats, verbal abuse, hitting, fighting, throwing of objects, etc. May be required to deal with distraught individuals.
The statements contained herein reflect general details as necessary to describe the essential functions of this position, the level of knowledge and skill typically required, and the scope of responsibility, but should not be considered an all-inclusive listing of work requirements. Individuals may perform other duties as assigned, including work in other functional areas to cover absences or relief, to equalize peak work periods, or otherwise to balance the workload. Changes to the position description may be made at the discretion of the employer.
It is the policy of the Northwest Educational Service District No. 189 to not discriminate against any person with regard to race, color, religion, sex, age, national origin, marital status or physical or mental disability.