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[ Recorded presentation ] Recorded presentation

Counseling today for learning tomorrow: Impacting academic achievement

Jason L Salemi, BS, Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, University of South Florida, College of Public Health, 13201 Bruce B. Downs Boulevard, Tampa, FL 33612, 813-490-4810, jsalemi@hsc.usf.edu, Anna Torrens Salemi, PhD(c), MPH, Department of Community and Family Health, University of South Florida, College of Public Health, 13201 Bruce B. Downs Boulevard, Tampa, FL 33612, David Fultz, MA, Sarasota County School District, Emma E. Booker Elementary School, 2350 Dr. Martin Luther King Way, Sarasota, FL 34234, Robyn Marinelli-Haff, Pupil Support Services, School Board of Sarasota County, 1960 Landings Blvd, Sarasota, FL 34231-3331, and Kelli R. McCormack Brown, PhD, CHES, Department of Community & Family Health, College of Public Health, University of South Florida, 13201 Bruce B. Downs Blvd, MDC 056, Tampa, FL 33612.

The Counseling Today for Learning Tomorrow project, funded by the United States Department of Education, aims to eliminate personal, social and emotional barriers to learning, while measuring standardized student outcome variables for success. Conducted in Sarasota County, Florida, the intervention schools display a myriad of high-risk indicators, all linked to the creation or fortification of the aforementioned learning barriers. Four elementary schools were selected; three as intervention sites and one as a control. Schools selected had the highest percentage of free and reduced lunch eligible students, the lowest standardized test scores, the highest minority population, and the lowest grades based on the State of Florida grading system. Each school selected 50 students in 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade based on a matrix score composed of FCAT scores, behavior, attendance, and academic grades, with a resultant sample of 800 students. Eight new pupil support service staff were hired to implement project interventions including, but not limited to: classroom based interventions, community agency interventions, tutoring/mentoring services, increased parental/guardian involvement, small group counseling, and individual counseling. Year three data reveals that interventions are meeting objectives of increasing standardized test scores by 5%, grade point average by 10%, and improving daily attendance by 5%. Mainly, these objectives were unmet or achieved to a lesser degree by the control school. Data indicate that when student support personnel are adequately funded, staffed, and used appropriately, barriers are overcome and student achievement is directly effected. Based on preliminary findings, school health policy implications can be derived.

Learning Objectives:

Keywords: School-Based Programs,

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

[ Recorded presentation ] Recorded presentation

School-Based Mental Health Programs and Services

The 132nd Annual Meeting (November 6-10, 2004) of APHA