Outline of the state of Illinois
Encouraged or Required

Early Identification and Referral

Early Identification and Referral

State law encourages or requires districts to implement identification and referral processes to link students and families with needed resources.


Guidelines address establishing early identification and referral processes and networks to link students with mental, behavioral health, or social services needs to intervention services.

Policy Type

Illinois Administrative Code 23-555.10 Purpose and Applicability

This Subpart A establishes the application procedure and criteria for selection by the State Superintendent of Education of the entities that will receive grant funds for programs designed to support students' mental health by: a) enhancing the recipients' capacity to identify and meet students' needs for early, coordinated mental health intervention services in "natural" settings; b) contributing to the development of a mental health support system for students that is integrated with community mental health agencies and other agencies and systems that serve children; and c) reducing the stigma associated with mental health and mental illness within the school community.

Policy Type

Illinois Administrative Code 23-555.30 Program Specifications

a) In order to achieve the goals specified in Section 555.10 of this Part, each proposed project shall include objectives and activities related to:

  • 1) Developing a protocol and structures for meeting the early intervention mental health needs of students, including identifying, referring, and following up on those who could benefit from early intervention, involving parents and other care-givers, and planning for and providing services from qualified mental health professionals, such as:
  • A) assessment,
  • B) individual and group counseling,
  • C) family support, and
  • D) school-wide mental health awareness activities;
  • 2) Coordinating services with those offered by other community-based service systems and providers by:
  • A) developing a framework for the integration of social and emotional learning and mental health-related initiatives based on a team approach that includes school staff, community-based providers, students, and their families to build upon existing mental health structures,
  • B) implementing formal interagency working agreements, and
  • C) providing services in "natural" settings such as schools, youth-serving agencies, or family homes; and
  • 3) Reducing the mental health stigma within the school community by:
  • A) conducting events for the school faculty, students, and family members to increase awareness regarding the impact of mental illness, the efficacy of mental health treatment, and the importance of early identification,
  • B) addressing mental health stigmas that are specific to particular cultures or segments of the community, and
  • C) promoting leadership among students and support for peers with regard to issues of mental health.

b) Each proposed project shall make services available to all students housed in any attendance center for which funding is provided under this Subpart A.

Policy Type

Illinois Compiled Statutes 105-5-10-22.24b. School counseling services.

School counseling services in public schools may be provided by school counselors as defined in Section 10-22.24a of this Code [105 ILCS 5/10-22.24a] or by individuals who hold a Professional Educator License with a school support personnel endorsement in the area of school counseling under Section 21B-25 of this Code [105 ILCS 5/10-21B.25]. School counseling services may include, but are not limited to: (1) designing and delivering a comprehensive school counseling program that promotes student achievement and wellness; (2) incorporating the common core language into the school counselor’s work and role; (3) school counselors working as culturally skilled professionals who act sensitively to promote social justice and equity in a pluralistic society; (4) providing individual and group counseling; (5) providing a core counseling curriculum that serves all students and addresses the knowledge and skills appropriate to their developmental level through a collaborative model of delivery involving the school counselor, classroom teachers, and other appropriate education professionals, and including prevention and pre-referral activities; (6) making referrals when necessary to appropriate offices or outside agencies; (7) providing college and career development activities and counseling; (8) developing individual career plans with students; (9) assisting all students with a college or post-secondary education plan, which must include a discussion on all post-secondary education options, including 4-year colleges or universities, community colleges, and vocational schools; (10) intentionally addressing the career and college needs of first generation students; (11) educating all students on scholarships, financial aid, and preparation of the Federal Application for Federal Student Aid; (12) collaborating with institutions of higher education and local community colleges so that students understand post-secondary education options and are ready to transition successfully; (13) providing crisis intervention and contributing to the development of a specific crisis plan within the school setting in collaboration with multiple stakeholders; (14) educating students, teachers, and parents on anxiety, depression, cutting, and suicide issues and intervening with students who present with these issues; (15) providing counseling and other resources to students who are in crisis; (16) providing resources for those students who do not have access to mental health services; (17) addressing bullying and conflict resolution with all students; (18) teaching communication skills and helping students develop positive relationships; (19) using culturally-sensitive skills in working with all students to promote wellness; (20) addressing the needs of undocumented students in the school, as well as students who are legally in the United States, but whose parents are undocumented; (21) contributing to a student’s functional behavioral assessment, as well as assisting in the development of non-aversive behavioral intervention strategies; (22) (i) assisting students in need of special education services by implementing the academic supports and social-emotional and college or career development counseling services or interventions per a student’s individualized education program (IEP); (ii) participating in or contributing to a student’s IEP and completing a social-developmental history; or (iii) providing services to a student with a disability under the student’s IEP or federal Section 504 plan, as recommended by the student’s IEP team or Section 504 plan team and in compliance with federal and State laws and rules governing the provision of educational and related services and school-based accommodations to students with disabilities and the qualifications of school personnel to provide such services and accommodations; (23) assisting in the development of a personal educational plan with each student; (24) educating students on dual credit and learning opportunities on the Internet; (25) providing information for all students in the selection of courses that will lead to post-secondary education opportunities toward a successful career; (26) interpreting achievement test results and guiding students in appropriate directions; (27) counseling with students, families, and teachers, in compliance with federal and State laws; (28) providing families with opportunities for education and counseling as appropriate in relation to the student’s educational assessment; (29) consulting and collaborating with teachers and other school personnel regarding behavior management and intervention plans and inclusion in support of students; (30) teaming and partnering with staff, parents, businesses, and community organizations to support student achievement and social-emotional learning Standard for all students; (31) developing and implementing school-based prevention programs, including, but not limited to, mediation and violence prevention, implementing social and emotional education programs and services, and establishing and implementing bullying prevention and intervention programs; (32) developing culturally-sensitive assessment instruments for measuring school counseling prevention and intervention effectiveness and collecting, analyzing, and interpreting data; (33) participating on school and district committees to advocate for student programs and resources, as well as establishing a school counseling advisory council that includes representatives of key stakeholders selected to review and advise on the implementation of the school counseling program; (34) acting as a liaison between the public schools and community resources and building relationships with important stakeholders, such as families, administrators, teachers, and board members; (35) maintaining organized, clear, and useful records in a confidential manner consistent with Section 5 of the Illinois School Student Records Act [105 ILCS 10/5], the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act [20 U.S.C.S. 1232g], and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act [215 ILCS 97/1 et seq.]; (36) presenting an annual agreement to the administration, including a formal discussion of the alignment of school and school counseling program missions and goals and detailing specific school counselor responsibilities; (37) identifying and implementing culturally-sensitive measures of success for student competencies in each of the 3 domains of academic, social and emotional, and college and career learning based on planned and periodic assessment of the comprehensive developmental school counseling program; (38) collaborating as a team member in Response to Intervention (RtI) and other school initiatives; (39) conducting observations and participating in recommendations or interventions regarding the placement of children in educational programs or special education classes; (40) analyzing data and results of school counseling program assessments, including curriculum, small-group, and closing-the-gap results reports, and designing strategies to continue to improve program effectiveness; (41) analyzing data and results of school counselor competency assessments; (42) following American School Counselor Association Ethical Standard for School Counselors to demonstrate high Standard of integrity, leadership, and professionalism; (43) knowing and embracing common core Standard by using common core language; (44) practicing as a culturally-skilled school counselor by infusing the multicultural competencies within the role of the school counselor, including the practice of culturally-sensitive attitudes and beliefs, knowledge, and skills; (45) infusing the Social-Emotional Standard, as presented in the State Board of Education Standard, across the curriculum and in the counselor’s role in ways that empower and enable students to achieve academic success across all grade levels; (46) providing services only in areas in which the school counselor has appropriate training or expertise, as well as only providing counseling or consulting services within his or her employment to any student in the district or districts which employ such school counselor, in accordance with professional ethics; (47) having adequate training in supervision knowledge and skills in order to supervise school counseling interns enrolled in graduate school counselor preparation programs that meet the Standard established by the State Board of Education; (48) being involved with State and national professional associations; (49) participating, at least once every 2 years, in an in-service training program for school counselors conducted by persons with expertise in domestic and sexual violence and the needs of expectant and parenting youth, which shall include training concerning (i) communicating with and listening to youth victims of domestic or sexual violence and expectant and parenting youth, (ii) connecting youth victims of domestic or sexual violence and expectant and parenting youth to appropriate in-school services and other agencies, programs, and services as needed, and (iii) implementing the school district’s policies, procedures, and protocols with regard to such youth, including confidentiality; at a minimum, school personnel must be trained to understand, provide information and referrals, and address issues pertaining to youth who are parents, expectant parents, or victims of domestic or sexual violence; (50) participating, at least every 2 years, in an in-service training program for school counselors conducted by persons with expertise in anaphylactic reactions and management; (51) participating, at least once every 2 years, in an in-service training on educator ethics, teacher-student conduct, and school employee-student conduct for all personnel; (52) participating, in addition to other topics at in-service training programs, in training to identify the warning signs of mental illness and suicidal behavior in adolescents and teenagers and learning appropriate intervention and referral techniques; (53) obtaining training to have a basic knowledge of matters relating to acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS), including the nature of the disease, its causes and effects, the means of detecting it and preventing its transmission, and the availability of appropriate sources of counseling and referral and any other information that may be appropriate considering the age and grade level of the pupils; the school board shall supervise such training and the State Board of Education and the Department of Public Health shall jointly develop Standard for such training; and (54) participating in mandates from the State Board of Education for bullying education and social-emotional literary. School districts may employ a sufficient number of school counselors to maintain the national and State recommended student-counselor ratio of 250 to 1. School districts may have school counselors spend at least 80% of his or her work time in direct contact with students. Nothing in this Section prohibits other qualified professionals, including other endorsed school support personnel, from providing the services listed in this Section.

Policy Type

Illinois Compiled Statutes 105-5-2-3.166. Youth suicide awareness and prevention.

(a) This Section may be referred to as Ann Marie’s Law.

(b) The State Board of Education shall do both of the following:

  • (1) In consultation with a youth suicide prevention organization operating in this State and organizations representing school boards and school personnel, develop a model youth suicide awareness and prevention policy that is consistent with subsection (c) of this Section.
  • (2) Compile, develop, and post on its publicly accessible Internet website both of the following, which may include materials already publicly available:
  • (A) Recommended guidelines and educational materials for training and professional development.
  • (B) Recommended resources and age-appropriate educational materials on youth suicide awareness and prevention.

(c) The model policy developed by the State Board of Education under subsection (b) of this Section and any policy adopted by a school board under subsection (d) of this Section shall include all of the following:

  • (1) A statement on youth suicide awareness and prevention.
  • (2) Protocols for administering youth suicide awareness and prevention education to staff and students.
  • (3) Methods of prevention, including procedures for early identification and referral of students at risk of suicide.
Policy Type