Mental Health Screener to Be Offered to Students

Mrs. Rachel Birschbach and Ms. Hannah Laus will be the Samaritan Counseling Center clinician and case manager, respectively, who will be administering the Wellness Screen Program at CHS.

Mrs. Rachel Birschbach and Ms. Hannah Laus will be the Samaritan Counseling Center clinician and case manager, respectively, who will be administering the Wellness Screen Program at CHS.

Karin Juhl and Claudia Brown

Beginning in March, the Wellness Screen Program administered by Samaritan Counseling Center will be coming to CHS and will be offered to all the grades. The purpose of this program is to notice different mental health concerns in students and to get them the help they need.

According to Ms. Hannah Laus, a case manager with Samaritan, the success of this program depends on the engagement of the students and teachers. The Wellness Screen program is offered at several other schools in Northeast Wisconsin, and all so far have been successful.

“It is really awesome to see a student who got support and to know that we helped with that,” Ms. Laus said. She and Mrs. Rachel Birschbach, a Samaritan clinician and district coordinator, will be overseeing the screening program at CHS.

     There are a few different steps to the Wellness Screen Program. First, a letter and two emails will be sent out to the parents/guardians of the students. This is to inform each family about the Wellness Screen opportunity. The family also has the chance to opt out their student from the screening.

The next step is to screen the participating students. They are each given a survey which takes about 10-15 minutes to complete. Afterwards, follow-up meetings are set up with students depending on their results.

There are many different reasons that a student would need a check-in for, so the number of students that are reached out to after each screening varies.

One reason that students could need a check-in is because they asked for additional support on the survey. Another reason could be that a student’s answers indicate that they could be experiencing a mental health concern, and would then be able to get the recommendation and support they need.

If a meeting is scheduled with a student, their family will be called to discuss their child’s results.

If a potential mental health concern is identified during the Wellness Screen, the student is asked about potential symptoms they experience that could correspond with common mental health concerns, such as anxiety and depression, during the follow-up meeting.

After meeting with a student, a recommendation might be given for further treatment. The program provides resources for the student and their family and will check in with them periodically to see if they need any further assistance or support.

For up to 90 days after the follow-up meeting, parents/guardians of the student will be asked about how the student is and if they have noticed any changes.