Connecticut - Professional Development for Mental Health: Staff Qualifications and Professional Development

Area: 
Staff Qualifications And Professional Development
Policy Type: 
Statute
Summary: 

State law encourages districts to provide professional development for school personnel on youth mental health.

General Statutes of Connecticut Sec. 17a-453h. Mental health first aid training program.

(a) The Commissioner of Mental Health and Addiction Services, in consultation with the Commissioner of Education, shall administer a mental health first aid training program. Said program shall: (1) Help persons attending the training program recognize the signs of mental disorders in children and young adults; and (2) connect children and young adults who show signs of having a mental disorder with a professional who offers the appropriate services.

(b) Said commissioners may seek federal and state funding and may accept private donations for the administration of, and providing for persons to participate in, the mental health first aid training program.

(c) (1) For the school year commencing July 1, 2014, the Commissioner of Mental Health and Addiction Services shall provide mental health first aid training to any person appointed to serve as the district safe school climate coordinator, pursuant to section 10-222k. Each such district safe school climate coordinator shall successfully complete such mental health first aid training.

  • (2) For the school year commencing July 1, 2015, the Commissioner of Mental Health and Addiction Services shall provide mental health and first aid training to any person appointed to serve as the district safe school climate coordinator for such school year and who did not serve as the district safe school climate coordinator for the prior school year or did not otherwise successfully complete such training. Each such district safe school climate coordinator shall successfully complete such mental health first aid training.
  • (3) No district safe school climate coordinator shall be required to successfully complete such mental health first aid training more than once.

(d) Each local and regional board of education may require teachers, school nurses, counselors and other school employees to participate in mental health first aid training.


General Statutes of Connecticut Sec. 10-220a. In-service training. Professional development and evaluation committees. Institutes for educators. Cooperating teacher program, regulations.

(a) Each local or regional board of education shall provide an in-service training program for its teachers, administrators and pupil personnel who hold the initial educator, provisional educator or professional educator certificate. Such program shall provide such teachers, administrators and pupil personnel with information on (1) the nature and the relationship of drugs, as defined in subdivision (17) of section 21a-240, and alcohol to health and personality development, and procedures for discouraging their abuse, (2) health and mental health risk reduction education that includes, but need not be limited to, the prevention of risk-taking behavior by children and the relationship of such behavior to substance abuse, pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV-infection and AIDS, as defined in section 19a-581, violence, teen dating violence, domestic violence, child abuse and youth suicide, (3) the growth and development of exceptional children, including children with a disability, gifted and talented children and children who may require special education, including, but not limited to, children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder or learning disabilities, and methods for identifying, planning for and working effectively with special needs children in a regular classroom, including, but not limited to, implementation of student individualized education programs, (4) school violence prevention, conflict resolution, the prevention of and response to youth suicide and the identification and prevention of and response to bullying, as defined in subsection (a) of section 10-222d, except that those boards of education that implement any evidence-based model approach that is approved by the Department of Education and is consistent with subsection (d) of section 10-145a, sections 10-222d, 10-222g and 10-222h, subsection (g) of section 10-233c and sections 1 and 3 of public act 08-160, shall not be required to provide in-service training on the identification and prevention of and response to bullying, (5) cardiopulmonary resuscitation and other emergency life saving procedures, (6) computer and other information technology as applied to student learning and classroom instruction, communications and data management, (7) the teaching of the language arts, reading and reading readiness for teachers in grades kindergarten to three, inclusive, (8) second language acquisition in districts required to provide a program of bilingual education pursuant to section 10-17f, (9) the requirements and obligations of a mandated reporter, (10) the teacher evaluation and support program adopted pursuant to subsection (b) of section 10-151b, (11) the detection and recognition of, and evidence-based structured literacy interventions for, students with dyslexia, as defined in section 10-3d, and (12) cultural competency consistent with the training in cultural competency described in subsection (i) of section 10-145a.

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