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August 2017 Meeting Minutes

Minutes for August 17, 2017 meeting of the Student Mental Health Policy Workgroup.

Student Mental Health Policy Workgroup
Sierra Health Foundation
1321 Garden Highway
Sacramento, CA 95833

August 17, 2018



Work Group Members

  • Ahmad Bahrami
  • Nicholas Betty
  • Michael Carter
  • Susan Coats
  • Ann Collentine
  • Gordon Doughty
  • Rachael Gonzales
  • Daniela Guarnizo
  • Stacie Hiramoto
  • Suh Chen Hsiao
  • Kathleen Jack
  • Mike Lombardo
  • Daniel McCarthy
  • Christopher Miller
  • Michael Millman
  • Marlon Morgan
  • Vic Ojakian
  • William Powers
  • Diana Rivera-Beltran
  • Amber Rowlands
  • Dan Sackheim
  • Nancy Shae
  • Brad Strong
  • Christine Tippett
  • Richard Van Horn
  • Lucy Vezzuto
  • Vivien Villaverde

Public Members

  • Jeremiah Aja
  • Rose Ann Bomentre
  • Maureen Burness
  • Cindy Chandler
  • Stacey Cutbush
  • Melissa DiScala
  • Nicole Duggan
  • Catherine Ellis
  • Lani Fuzessery
  • Dawn Greene
  • April Jones
  • Annette Kunzman
  • Kathleen Larson
  • Kai LeMasson
  • Lynn Mackey
  • Danielle Molé
  • Meagan O’Malley
  • Bi Vuong
  • Dorinda Wiseman
  • Kathleen Snyder
  • Kimberly Coughlin
  • Ed Thompson
  • Grace Espindola
  • Joseph Labonog
  • Elzena Hayes

California Department of Education Staff

  • Monica Nepomuceno, Co-Chairperson
  • David Kopperud, Co-Chairperson
  • Gordon Jackson
  • Barbara Pomerantz
  • Dan Sackheim
  • Yvonne Evans
  • Jackie Wong
  • Margarita Garcia
  • Elvia McGuire


  • Bi Vuong
  • Marlon Morgan
  • Meagan O’Malley
  • Chris Miller
  • Brad Strong
  • Annette Kunzman

Welcome and Introductions

  • Monica Nepomuceno, Co-Chairperson: Opened the meeting at 10:10 a.m. Welcomed those present, and asked Student Mental Health Policy Workgroup (SMHPW) members and public members to introduce themselves.

  • Gordon Jackson, California Department of Education (CDE): Thanked the work group and public members for attending, particularly since many members travel from throughout the state to attend.

  • Gordon Jackson, CDE: Stressed that the SMHPW’s efforts are creating positive policy changes in support of student mental health. Reminded the group that together they are making a difference for California’s students.

Approval of Minutes

  • Vic Ojakian, Member: Moved to accept the May 10, 2017, meeting minutes. Gordon Doughty, Member, seconded the motion. The minutes were approved unanimously.

Review of Goals of Student Mental Health Policy Workgroup

  • David Kopperud, Co-Chairperson: Reviewed the goals of the SMHPW, stating that the purpose of the SMHPW is to recommend mental health policies that help address the needs of California’s students.

Project Cal-Well Update

  • Monica Nepomuceno, Co-Chairperson: Explained that due to the heavy demands of back-to-school preparation and the schedule of Youth Mental Health First Aid (YMHFA) trainings, the Project Cal-Well local educational agency (LEA) grantees were unable to attend. All LEA grantees will administer the Project Cal-Well Module of the California Healthy Kids Survey. Shared additional information on behalf of the grantees and the CDE:

    • ABC Unified School District (USD) started their school year this week, and is implementing their Suicide Prevention Policy.

    • Garden Grove Unified School District (GGUSD) is training all staff on YMHFA. They are using Project Cal-Well funds to open a district-run family resource center, providing training on Positive Behavior Interventions and Strategies, and launching the Resilient Mind Learner Project. In addition, GGUSD has developed a Suicide Prevention Training and guide. To date, two parent nights and two trainings for school and clinical staff have been held.

      • San Diego County Office of Education (COE) has been implementing a Model Suicide Prevention Policy and is providing Suicide Prevention and YMHFA trainings.

      • Mountain Empire USD trained over 200 participants in YMHFA this week.

  • Hawthorne School District trained over 440 participants through 12 simultaneously held YMHFA trainings.

  • Monica Nepomuceno, Co-Chairperson: Reported that the number of YMHFA Trainings required under Project Cal-Well are being exceeded. Announced that the Nevada State Department of Education will be funding YMHFA Instructor Trainings on September 18–22, 2017.

  • Monica Nepomuceno, Co-Chairperson: Announced a potential $9 million funding cut to the Project Cal-Well grant which is funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). Explained that the five-year grant could end after Year 4—a year early. Stated that SAMHSA is advocating for Project Cal-Well. Informed the group that she will keep them updated on this subject.

  • Monica Nepomuceno, Co-Chairperson: Reported that some LEAs have started implementing their Suicide Prevention Policies.

  • Monica Nepomuceno, Co-Chairperson: Informed the group that National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) on Campus High School (NCHS) Workshops need to be held within a very tight timeframe as all monies need to be spent by September 29, 2017. Announced that NCHS Workshops will be held in September at the following locations:

    • San Diego
    • Lynwood
    • Baldwin Park
    • Tehama
    • Two more locations are to be determined

Follow-Up Discussion: Co-Vitality Social Emotional Health Survey System

  • Monica Nepomuceno, Co-Chairperson: Reported that Dr. Furlong will provide YMHFA trainings to 25 schools in his area. Asked the group if there are any further actions they would like to take regarding the Co-Vitality Social Emotional Health Survey System.

  • Lucy Vezzuto, Member: Reported that some schools in Orange County are working with Dr. Furlong and the Co-Vitality Social Emotional Health Survey System. Irvine USD is doing a pilot at the secondary level.

  • A public member suggested going through the Association of California School Administrators (ACSA) and contact leads for after school programs to get more people trained in social-emotional learning.

Discussion: Promotion and Expansion of Opportunities for Suicide Prevention Trainings and Inclusion of Student Mental Health Policy

  • Monica Nepomuceno, Co-Chairperson: Proposed holding a Webinar to discuss the need for, availability, and appropriate content of Suicide Prevention trainings.

  • Ahmad Bahrami, Member: Stated that Kings County Behavioral Health is reaching out to schools regarding Assembly Bill 2246 and providing resources to them. LEAs will need to reach out to Kings COE for Suicide Prevention Policies and trainings.

  • Ann Collentine, Member: Commented that a Webinar is a nice avenue for sharing resources.

  • Monica Nepomuceno, Co-Chairperson: Shared that the You Are Not Alone Project and Stan Collins, Suicide Prevention Specialist, are providing Suicide Prevention trainings to LEAs in San Diego County.

  • Dan Sackheim, CDE: Discussed the need to meet with COEs and the California County Superintendents Educational Services Association. The California Association of Supervisors of Child Welfare and Attendance (CASCWA) Conference includes presentations on Multi-Tiered Systems of Supports (MTSS). The CASCWA reaches out to child welfare and attendance folks and educators.

  • Ann Collentine, Member: Shared that Europe has a policy framework called Mental Health in All Policies.

  • Mike Lombardo, Member: Commented that Mental Health Services Act (MHSA) funds are used in many counties. Recommended researching county-level behavioral health Web sites for resources and meeting schedules.

  • Vivien Villaverde, Member: Shared that Pasadena USD is developing a Mental Health Policy for the district and working on organizational change. Stated that MTSS is a great framework and asked how we could make it into a plan that could be implemented.

  • Grace Espindola, Member: Recommended searching for counties which are accomplishing great things. Stated that in Sutter County, good relationships are key to making things happen. Asked Mike Lombardo to join with Sutter County in their efforts.

  • Ed Thompson, Public Member: Suggested that the group connect with school administrators—especially new folks—through ACSA. Said, “We need to get mental health into the mix.”

  • Monica Nepomuceno, Co-Chairperson: Stated that our first efforts in the SMHPW were to get mental health into the standards for the credentialing of school administrators and teachers.

Presentation: Proving Ground Method for Continuous Improvement of Interventions

  • Bi Vuong, Center for Education Policy Research, Harvard University: Gave a presentation on Proving Ground, a network for continuous improvement.

  • The Proving Ground research program uses peer networking, change management, and data analytics to help districts develop systems to improve student attendance by tracking student absence.

  • The program helps school districts analyze student absence by reviewing absence rates by schools, subgroups, and other categories as needed. The Proving Ground team then helps the districts to develop action plans, based on the results reflected in the data. The partners collaborate with others in the program to exchange ideas and best practices. Implementation and impact data helps determine whether the interventions were successful.

  • Bi Vuong, Center for Education Policy Research, Harvard University: Stated that the program costs $100,000 to $150,000, depending on the size of the district, but currently available nonprofit funding can help defray 50 to 60 percent of the cost for districts with funding issues.

The School Mental Health Personnel Matrix

  • Monica Nepomuceno, Co-Chairperson: Informed the group that the Matrix was created for LEAs to better determine what kind of staff they would like to hire on their campuses to address specific mental health concerns.

  • Marlon Morgan, Member: Stated that the Matrix will increase the understanding of who might be most helpful to bring in to a district’s schools—psychologists, social workers, etc.

  • Meagan O’Malley, Member: Asked the group to visit the Bitly/SOPdocument, which is where the draft Matrix could be reviewed, and any feedback or suggestions could be submitted

  • Marlon Morgan, Member: Suggested having an attorney review the document, and perhaps adding a disclaimer stating that the Matrix is not a legal document. Marlon Morgan, Member: Stated that the vision of this document was that it would be owned by the CDE. Reported that he and Meagan are quite a ways from the final product. Informed the group that the CDE would have to send the document through its own approval process.

New Subcommittee: Health Education Framework Revision

  • Chris Miller, University of San Francisco: Described the process of revising the California Health Education Framework. Stated that the process began in fall 2016 to update the Framework for review by teachers, administrators, and school boards in advance of its anticipated approval by the State Board of Education in May of 2019. The SMHPW has also been asked to provide input.

  • Vivien Villaverde, Member: Thanked Chris for his work on the project.

New Subcommittee Renamed

  • Monica Nepomuceno, Co-Chairperson: Announced that the 13 Reasons Why Subcommittee has been renamed as the Suicide Prevention Subcommittee.

Subcommittee and Other Updates Tabled Until Next Meeting

  • Monica Nepomuceno, Co-Chairperson: Stated that due to the absence of several subcommittee members, the following subcommittee reports have been tabled until the next SMHPW Meeting:

    • Suicide Prevention (formerly 13 Reasons Why)
    • MTSS
    • Data and Accountability
    • Professional Development
    • All Kids Are Our Kids Survey

Presentation: Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder Network of Southern California

  • Annette Kunzman, Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) Network of Southern California: Gave a presentation on the FASD Network of Southern California.

  • FASD describes a range of permanent birth defects and the effects that can occur in an individual exposed to alcohol in the womb during pregnancy due to maternal consumption of alcohol. FASD includes, but is not limited to FASD, Partial Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, Alcohol-Related Neurodevelopmental Disorder, Alcohol-Related Birth Defects, and Fetal Alcohol Effect.

  • The FASD Network of Southern California is a nonprofit organization with a mission to enhance the quality of life through information, advocacy, and service for children, adolescents, and adults in Southern California who are affected by Prenatal Alcohol Exposure (PAE), and to empower those who care for or serve those affected by PAE.

  • The effects of PAE can include physical, mental, behavioral, and/or learning disabilities in babies. These effects have been known to last a lifetime as the brain and central nervous systems are permanently damaged. Impairments to other organs and physical structures are also possible. PAE is a leading known cause for developmental disabilities and birth defects.

  • FASDs are frequently undiagnosed and misdiagnosed, overlapping with disorders such as attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, autism, sensory integration dysfunction, trauma, bi-polar behavior, etc. The effects of FASD are very similar to many disorders, however the stigma of FASD discourages parents, physicians, and educational systems from screening for and diagnosing children with FASD. The stigma and fear of judgement is one of the main reasons why women will not tell healthcare providers or others about their drinking during pregnancy. Because of this, FASD remains under-diagnosed and helps explain why FASD remains a largely “hidden” disability.

  • Annette Kunzman, FASD Network of Southern California: Encouraged the group not to judge, shame, or blame women, but to encourage them to seek the right help and to share the knowledge of FASD. Early identification, intervention, and accommodations can prevent the occurrence of secondary issues with those diagnosed with FASD.

Legislative Update: Assembly Bill 89, AB 254, AB 340, AB 834, AB 1029, AB 1261, Senate Bill 191, SB 192

  • Brad Strong, Member: Provided a legislative update of the following bills:

  • Assembly Bill 89: Would, effective January 1, 2020, require an applicant for licensure as a psychologist to complete a minimum of six hours of coursework or applied experience under supervision in suicide risk assessment and intervention. The bill would also require, effective January 1, 2020, as a one-time requirement, a licensed psychologist to have completed this suicide risk assessment and intervention training requirement prior to the time of his or her first renewal. The bill would also require, effective January 1, 2020, a person applying for reactivation or for reinstatement to have completed this suicide risk assessment and intervention training requirement.

  • AB 254: Would require the State Department of Health Care Services to establish the LEA Behavioral Health Integration Pilot Program for the purpose of improving the behavioral health outcomes of students by improving the delivery of direct behavioral health services, as defined. The bill would require the department to encourage eligible participants to participate in the program, provide technical assistance to eligible participants, develop a Request for Proposal process to determine funding allocation, and formulate any necessary Medi-Cal State Plan amendments, and award grants pursuant to these provisions.
    Brad Strong, Member: Said, “$10 million for four years will be committed through the bill as opposed to the budget process, this is a large step.”

  • AB 340: Would require, consistent with federal law, that screening services under the Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnostic, and Treatment Program include screening for trauma, as defined by the bill and as specified. The bill also would require the Department of Health Care Services, in consultation with the State Department of Social Services and others, to adopt, employ, and develop, as appropriate, tools and protocols for screening children for trauma and would authorize the department to implement, interpret, or make specific the screening tools and protocols by means of all-county letters, plan letters, or plan or provider bulletins, as specified.

  • AB 834: Would require the State Department of Education to, no later than July 1, 2018, establish an Office of School-Based Health Programs for the purpose of, among other things, administering health-related programs under the purview of the State Department of Education and advising on issues related to the delivery of school-based Medi-Cal services in the state. The bill would authorize the office to form additional advisory groups, as specified, and would require the State Department of Education to make available to the office any information on other school-based dental, health, and mental health programs.

  • AB 1029: Current law requires a School Site Council or a School Safety Planning Committee comprised of specified members to write and develop a Comprehensive School Safety Plan relevant to the needs and resources of a particular school, and exempts a small school district from this requirement if certain conditions are met. Current law authorizes a school district or COE to elect to have the portions of the plan that include tactical responses to criminal incidents to be developed by the administrators of the school district or COE in consultation with law enforcement officials. This bill would require the Comprehensive School Safety Plan to be aligned with the School Climate State Priority and the Local Control and Accountability Plan.

  • AB 1261: Would require, in developing a pupil suicide prevention policy in consultation with school and community stakeholders, school-employed mental health professionals, and suicide prevention experts, a LEA with a mandatory expulsion policy or zero tolerance policy for the use of, possession of, or being under the influence of, alcohol, an intoxicant, or a controlled substance to consider whether the mandatory expulsion policy or zero tolerance policy is deterring pupils from seeking help for substance abuse. By imposing additional duties on LEAs, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program.

  • Senate Bill 191: Would authorize a county, or a qualified provider operating as part of the county mental health plan network, and a LEA to enter into a partnership to create a program that includes, among other things, targeted interventions for pupils with identified social-emotional, behavioral, and academic needs and an agreement that establishes a Medi-Cal mental health provider that is county operated or county contracted for the provision of mental health and substance use disorder services to pupils of the LEA and in which there are provisions for the delivery of campus-based mental health and substance use disorder services through qualified providers or qualified professionals to provide on-campus support to identify pupils with an individualized education program (IEP), and pupils who do not have an IEP, but who a teacher believes may require mental health or substance use disorder services and, with parental consent, to provide those services to those pupils.

  • SB 192: Would amend the MHSA by instead requiring that any funds allocated since the 2008–09 fiscal year (FY), except as specified, to a large, medium, small, or very small county, as defined, that have not been spent for their authorized purpose within three years of being allocated, and any interest earned on unspent funds, revert to the state for deposit into the newly established MHSA Reversion Fund. The bill would authorize a very small county to apply for a waiver, subject to approval by the commission, requesting a delay of the reversion of funds, but not for more than five FYs from the time of allocation of funds.

Attendance Awareness Month

  • David Kopperud, Co-Chairperson: Announced that California is celebrating Attendance Awareness Month in September. The goals of Attendance Awareness Month are to expand the public’s awareness of the important role that regular attendance plays in a student’s academic achievement, to promote schools and community partners to use data to create and drive action plans, and to activate a wide array of stakeholders to partner with students and families to reduce chronic absenteeism.

Public Comments

  • There were no public comments.

Next Steps, Closing Comments, and Evaluations

  • David Kopperud, Co-Chairperson: Adjourned the meeting at 4:04 p.m.
Questions: David Kopperud | | 916-323-1028 
Last Reviewed: Thursday, April 9, 2020
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    The Student Mental Health Policy Workgroup will assess the current mental health needs of California students and gather evidence to support its policy recommendations to the State Superintendent of Public Instruction and the California Legislature.
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