View Cart

Collaboration With Student’s Physician And/Or Mental Health Provider

Collaboration With Student’s Physician And/Or Mental Health Provider

Why should I do it:

  • IMPORTANT! ONLY speak, interact, contact, correspond, etc, with a student’s counselor, therapist, psychologist, psychiatrist, doctor, physician, mental health provider, case manager, etc, when given written consent and permission on a federally, state, and locally approved consent form(s) by the student’s legal guardian, witness, and the relevant party you are seeking to disclose and/or request information from
  • Provides valuable outside perspective, ideas, strategies, understanding, interventions, etc
  • Provides additional support for school staff
  • Injects knowledge and information from an additional professional discipline
  • Increases the scope and reach of the behavior team
  • Provides more of a wrap around approach, involving all domains of the student’s life and supports
  • Provides increased consistency between home and school
  • Prevents student’s from telling different stories to different people as a way to avoid issues
  • Helps the school deal with issues that may be beyond the scope and capacity of the school to appropriately address, like suicidal threats

When should I do it:

  • IMPORTANT! ONLY speak, interact, contact, correspond, etc, with a student’s counselor, therapist, psychologist, psychiatrist, doctor, physician, mental health provider, case manager, etc, when given written consent and permission on a federally, state, and locally approved consent form(s) by the student’s legal guardian, witness, and the relevant party you are seeking to disclose and/or request information from
  • When a student has significant mental and health issues that affect their school functioning
  • When a student has issues that are beyond the scope and capacity of the school, like suicidal threats and comments, severe anxiety, etc
  • When a student’s therapist requests to communicate with the school or provides suggestions for how the school could intervene
  • When a student takes medication for a mental health issue
  • When school interventions seem ineffective and consequences and rewards do not seem to impact the student’s behavior
  • When the student’s behavior requires more extensive intervention than the school can provide
  • When students seem to be telling different stories to different people as a way of avoiding issues or pitting home and school against one another
  • When a student seems to respond best to their therapist or outside counselor
  • When a family has a family therapist or case worker involved
  • When a student’s medication seems to be affecting their ability to function in school
  • When a student has severe ADHD
  • When a student has a serious mental health issue, like Bipolar Disorder, Major Depression, etc

How do I do it:

  • IMPORTANT! ONLY speak, interact, contact, correspond, etc, with a student’s counselor, therapist, psychologist, psychiatrist, doctor, physician, mental health provider, case manager, etc, when given written consent and permission on a federally, state, and locally approved consent form(s) by the student’s legal guardian, witness, and the relevant party you are seeking to disclose and/or request information from
  • Speak with the parent about the need for communicating with the student’s therapist or physician
  • Have the parent sign a consent form for the school to contact and interact with the therapist and/or physician (sometimes two consent forms may be required, one for the school to release information and another for the school to request information)
  • Keep a log and notes of all communications with the therapist or physician
  • Invite the therapist or physician to behavior meetings
  • Request strategies, interventions, suggestions, tips, etc from the therapist or physician, getting the information sent in written form when possible
  • Explain to the therapist or physician specifically how the behavior or issues affects the student in school and prevents them from being successful
  • Relay to the therapist or physician exactly what behaviors or issues are observed in school and what interventions are utilized
  • Relay to the therapist or physician any observations about medications, apparent side effects, etc
  • Explain what the school’s goals are for the student and what barriers need to be overcome to achieve them
  • If a teacher or other staff member is uncomfortable with speaking to the student’s therapist, have the School Counselor, School Social Worker or School Psychologist speak with the outside therapist

Resources & Support for technique:
(Items with footnotes link to external websites)


Footnotes:

  1. The HSC Foundation. Partnering withYour Child’s School: A Guide for Parents. [http://www.hscfoundation.org/aboutus/publications/partnering_with_schools_english_guide.pdf].
  2. Gundlach, M. (2010). The Importance of Counselor and Teacher Communication. [http://www.brighthub.com/education/k-12/articles/26667.aspx].
  3. Torrey, T. (2011). Effective Patient – Doctor Communications. [http://patients.about.com/od/therightdoctorforyou/a/docpatientcomm.htm].
  4. Shaner, C. L., Fibromyalgia AWARE, Sept-Dec 2002. Can we talk? How to communicate with your doctor. [http://www.anapsid.org/cnd/diagnosis/canwetalk.html].
  5. The Regents of The University of California. Communicating with Your Doctor. [http://www.ucsfhealth.org/education/communicating_with_your_doctor/].
  6. Eastman, P., Reader’s Digest June 1998. How to Really Communicate With Your Doctor. [http://www.rd.com/health/how-to-really-communicate-with-your-doctor/].