ALBANY — Nearly 150 county officials joined a webinar hosted by the New York State Association of Counties (NYSAC), the New York State School Boards Association (NYSSBA), and the Conference of Local Mental Hygiene Directors (CLMHD), which gathered stakeholders from the mental health and education fields to discuss mental health challenges posed by the pandemic and what role counties can play in aiding the mental well being of schoolchildren.

The session offered strategies for promoting mental health, including instituting Social and Emotional Learning (SEL), launching collaborations between county agencies and community partners, creating a System of Care approach, providing emotional care and mental health first aid training for staff, and working with credible messengers to engage youth in communities. “Counties and community providers are uniquely positioned to help schools plan, develop and coordinate mental health services for children and families. Creating and strengthening thriving partnerships between schools and county-based providers can only help students with mental health needs,” said Schneider.

Additional resources can be found at: School Mental Health Training Center –; and the Conference of Local Mental Hygiene Directors –

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January 9, 2021