Arkansas - School-based or School-linked Mental Health Services: Programs and Services

Programs And Services
Policy Type: 
statute; regulation

State law requires districts to establish school-based or school-linked mental health promotion and intervention programs.

2017 Arkansas Code 6-18-1005 Public School Student Services Act - Student services program defined

(a) "Student services program" means a coordinated effort, which shall include, but is not limited to:

  • (1) Guidance and counseling services, which shall include, but are not limited to:
    • (A) The availability of individual and group counseling to all students;
    • (B) Orientation programs for new students at each level of education and for transferring students;
    • (C) Academic advisement for class selection by establishing academic goals in elementary, middle, and high school;
    • (D) Consultation with parents, faculty, and out-of-school agencies concerning student problems and needs;
    • (E) Utilization of student records and files;
    • (F) Interpretation of augmented, criterion-referenced, or norm-referenced assessments and dissemination of results to the school, students, parents, and community;
    • (G) The following up of early school dropouts and graduates;
    • (H) A school-initiated system of parental involvement;
    • (I) An organized system of informational resources on which to base educational and vocational decision making;
    • (J) Educational, academic assessment, and career counseling, including advising students on the national college assessments, workforce opportunities, and alternative programs that could provide successful high school completion and postsecondary opportunities for students;
    • (K) Coordinating administration of the Test for Adult Basic Education or a high school equivalency pretest to students by designating appropriate personnel, other than the school guidance counselor, to administer the tests;
    • (L) Classroom guidance, which shall be limited to forty-minute class sessions, not to exceed three (3) per day and not to exceed ten (10) per week; and
    • (M) Guidance in understanding the relationship between classroom performance and success in school;
  • (2) Psychological services, which shall include, but are not limited to, the following:
    • (A) Evaluation of students with learning or adjustment problems;
    • (B) Evaluation of students in exceptional child education programs;
    • (C) Consultation and counseling with parents, students, and school personnel to ensure that all students are ready to succeed and that all students are preparing for college and work;
    • (D) A system for the early identification of learning potential and factors that affect the child's educational performance;
    • (E) A system of liaison and referrals, with resources available outside the school; and
    • (F) Written policies that assure ethical procedures in psychological activities;
  • (3) Visiting teacher and school social work services, which shall include, but are not limited to, the following:
    • (A) Providing casework to assist in the prevention and remediation of problems of attendance, behavior, adjustment, and learning; and
    • (B) Serving as liaison between the home and school by making home visits and referring students and parents to appropriate school and community agencies for assistance;
    • (4) Career services, which shall include, but are not limited to, the dissemination of career education information, appropriate course-taking patterns, and the effect of taking more rigorous courses so that students are better prepared for college and work success;

Arkansas Administrative Rules 005.15.12-008 Rules Governing Public School Student Services


  • 6.01 In order to provide the student services required by the Public School Student Services Act, a school district may utilize the following types of personnel in addition to any standard student services personnel:

    • 6.01.1 Professionals or paraprofessionals in the social work or mental health fields;
    • 6.01.2 Volunteers under the supervision of certified personnel; and
    • 6.01.3 Medicaid licensed targeted case managers.
  • 6.02 Personnel employed under Section 6.01 shall be limited to performing those services for which they are licensed, certified, or trained.
    Arkansas Secretary of State

2017 Arkansas Code 6-18-1002. Public School Student Services Act - Purpose

It is the intent of the General Assembly to articulate the functions served by each of the components of a program of student services. It is further the intent of the General Assembly that each school district develop and implement a plan for providing student services to all students in the public school system, including area vocational-technical schools. Such plan shall be implemented no later than the 1991-1992 school year. It is the intent of the General Assembly that student services coordinators be given time to fulfill their responsibilities under this subchapter.

2017 Arkansas Code 6-18-1003. Public School Student Services Act - Rules and Regulations

The State Board of Education is authorized to adopt rules to carry out the intent of this legislation; such rules shall include, but need not be limited to:

  • (1) A description of the student services program at all educational levels for which the school district board of directors is responsible;
  • (2) Criteria for the development by each school of a building-based student services plan which reflects input from parents, teachers, principals, students, and other agencies;
  • (3) Identification of alternative student services personnel who do not meet traditional graduate school requirements and who may be used by the school district board of directors in providing the recommended student services, including, but not limited to, paraprofessionals, teachers, parents, and representatives of business and industry; and
  • (4) Establishment of minimum standards for all areas of student services personnel.
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